The decision comes as the country is set to go into a hard lockdown from April 14
The curtain of Amar Ekushey Book Fair will fall on April 12, just two days before its closure schedule, due to the worsening Covid-19 situation in the country.
State Minister for Cultural Affairs KM Khalid made the announcement at a press release on Saturday.
The decision of closure comes at a time when the government is going to enforce a week-long hard lockdown across the country starting from April 14, aimed at curbing Covid-19 transmission.
Although the country is now undergoing a seven-day lockdown from April 5, the initiative has proven to be ineffective in ensuring full implementation of health safety rules.
The book fair that started on March 18 amid the resurgence of Covid-19 and was scheduled to end on April 14, failed to get its usual momentum with publishers and sellers fearing huge losses in their businesses.
Besides, the deteriorating Covid-19 condition forced the organizers to curtail the fair hours frequently, which the publishers and sellers believe played another role for the poor presence of visitors.
On April 4, the Ministry of Cultural Affairs issued a notification saying the fair would remain open from 12pm to 5pm daily during the ongoing lockdown.
Earlier on March 31, the Bangla Academy announced that the book fair would open at 3pm and close at 6:30pm on the weekdays. On the weekends, however, the fair would open at 11am and close at 6:30pm.
Initially, the fair was supposed to remain open from 3pm to 9pm on weekdays, and from 8:30am to 9pm on Fridays and Saturdays.
This year, 834 units were allocated to 540 publishing houses and organizations to facilitate sale of books and other publications.
The authorities allotted 154 units on the Bangla Academy premises to 107 organizations and 680 units in the Suhrawardy Udyan to 433 organizations.
Considering the Covid-19 social-distancing requirements, the land earmarked for this year's fair was expanded to 1,500,000 square feet and there are 33 pavilions in the fair.