• Thursday, May 19, 2022
  • Last Update : 04:24 pm

Health Minister: New Covid-19 strain found in 10 EU returnees

  • Published at 10:53 pm March 17th, 2021
Health_Minister
Health Minister Zahid Maleque speaks at a program marking the birth centenary of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in Dhaka on Wednesday, 17 March 2021 Focus Bangla

Zahid Maleque said the ministries have been instructed to take steps to put restrictions on large gatherings in public transports, restaurants and tourist spots

Ten European Union returnees have so far been detected with the new strain of Covid-19 that was first reported in the UK, Health Minister Zahid Maleque said on Wednesday.

"However, the new variants have not spread in Bangladesh as all the patients detected with new Covid-19 variants have been isolated," said the minister.

He was attending a program held to mark the birth centenary of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in Dhaka. 

"The country is seeing a spike in Covid-19 infections recently as people are crowding the tourist spots and attending social and religious programs without following the health guidelines," the minister said. 

So, the ministries have been instructed to take steps to put restrictions on large gatherings in public transports, restaurants and tourist spots, he added. 

In the last month, around 2 million people went to visit Chittagong and another 10 million attended social events without following health protocols, he said. 

"Only vaccination cannot keep us safe from Covid-19. Things will go out of control if there is a big rise in Covid-19 infection. We do not have many hospital beds; none of the countries has this capacity," the minister added.

Covid-19 in Bangladesh  

Bangladesh registered 11 more deaths and 1,865 Covid-19 cases in 24 hours till Wednesday morning.

The daily tally of Covid-19 fatalities showed a downtrend on Wednesday, after being steady at 26 for two consecutive days - Tuesday and Monday.

With the latest figures, the Covid-19 fatalities climbed to 8,608 and total infections to 562,752, according to the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS). 

Vaccination drive

Bangladesh launched its nationwide Covid-19 vaccination drive on February 7. 

By Tuesday, 4,580,391 people received the first dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine. The second dose has to be taken between eight and 12 weeks of the first one. 

The government is providing the vaccine for free. It signed an agreement with India's Serum Institute for acquiring 30 million doses of the vaccine. 

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