Surge in Corona Infections in Border Dists

People still show utter disregard for health guidelines

Esaraf Hossain

9 June, 2021 12:00 AM printer

Although the number of deaths and infections from coronavirus has been rising in border districts amid the presence of Delta or Indian variant of the virus in the country, people of these areas are not maintaining health guidelines, including wearing masks and keeping distance with others.

Eight more Covid-19 patients died at Rajshahi Medical College Hospital (RMCH) in the past 24 hours till Tuesday, health officials said.

During the period, 33 patients were admitted to the corona unit of the hospital. Of them, 16 are from Rajshahi, 14 from Chapainawabganj, two from Natore and one is from Naogaon.

With this, a total of 257 Covid-19 patients are currently undergoing treatment at the hospital.

Some 71 people have died of coronavirus in Rajshahi division since June 1.

With three new casualties, the death toll in bordering Chapainawabganj district has risen to 59.

However, common people in these areas are not taking the rise in coronavirus deaths and infections seriously at all as they are not maintaining health protocols properly.

Police said people in large numbers are coming out of their residences on lame excuse and rushing towards streets, footpaths and kitchen markets.

Law enforcers are seemingly failing to tackle the stream of people and vehicles on streets. It appears that they have all but forgotten about the protective measures – wearing masks, maintaining social distancing and washing hands.

Health rules were hardly maintained at kitchen markets while cars, rickshaws and auto-rickshaws moved around freely.

Following a rise in coronavirus infections there, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina recently instructed for imposing strict lockdown on different bordering districts to contain its outbreak.

Health Minister Zahid Maleque also expressed deep concern over the rising trend of such virus in these bordering districts, including Chapainawabganj, Naogaon, Natore, Satkhira, Jashore, Rajshahi, Kushtia and Khulna.

After a new strain of coronavirus from India was discovered in Chapainawabganj on May 24, the local authorities imposed a strict lockdown on the district for a week. Later, the lockdown was extended for another week.

Similar restrictions were also recommended for Naogaon, Natore, Satkhira, Jashore, Rajshahi, Kushtia and Khulna districts.

The local administration, civil surgeons and local representatives can jointly declare lockdown in an entire district or in a particular place if the Covid-19 situation turns serious there.

Meanwhile, the authorities decided to enforce a weeklong lockdown in Natore and Singra municipality areas starting today to contain the spread of coronavirus.

Natore Deputy Commissioner Mohammad Shahriaz took the decision on Monday night during a virtual meeting, which was attended by State Minister for ICT Division Zunaid Ahmed Palak.

The lockdown will continue till June 15, officials said.

During the weeklong lockdown, all modes of public transport will stay off the roads. However, the movement restrictions will not be applicable for vehicles used for emergency services.

Besides, all shops, markets and restaurants will remain closed except for grocery stores and pharmacies.

According to the health authorities, the infection rate in the district is 62 per cent and the number of Covid-19 cases is on the rise in the municipality areas.

On Monday, the local administration launched a mobile antigen test drive to detect the community-based infection.

The health authorities have also set up Covid test booths, said Civil Surgeon Kazi Mizanur Rahman.

Bangladesh has seen a big spike in both deaths and infections from coronavirus over the last 24 hours till Tuesday morning.

During the period, the country registered 44 deaths and 2,322 cases from the virus, up by 14 and 352 than Monday’s 30 and 1,970 respectively.