No cattle markets to be allowed to operate on streets or open grounds, says minister
The government has asked the authorities in border districts to prevent the movement of people and cattle smuggling from India ahead of Eid-ul-Ahza to help check the spread of coronavirus.
“On the occasion of Eid, many people and animals come to the country from India through legal and illegal routes,” Local Government Minister Md Tazul Islam said on Sunday during a virtual inter-ministerial meeting.
“The country is suffering due to the extensive spread of delta variants of the coronavirus as India is our neighboring country,” he said, while giving directives to the local authorities to take due measures to prevent illegal entry of people and animals from India under any circumstances.
“Law enforcers have to remain cautious about illegal cattle smuggling through the [Bangladesh-India] border ahead of Eid,” the minister said.
Cattle smuggling from India has dropped significantly since 2014 when the Indian government took strict measures and opted for beef exports. But the smugglers are still active in the bordering areas of Bangladesh. Owners of cow fattening farms have long been urging the government to stop the smuggling and save the local farms.
During the meeting, the minister also asked the mayors of Dhaka city corporations and municipalities across the country to take extra measures during the Eid considering the Covid-19 situation.
“No cattle markets should be allowed to operate on the streets or at playgrounds. All districts, upazilas, municipalities and unions should designate a few spots for the slaughtering of animals,” he said.
Dhaka North mayor bats for online sales
Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) and Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) are going to set up 13 and nine cattle markets, respectively, this year.
DNCC Mayor Md Atiqul Islam stressed the use of digital cattle markets bearing in mind the worsening pandemic situation.
“We have discussed the matter with the a2i officials,” he said on Sunday.
The DNCC would allocate 20,000 biodegradable plastic bags and more than 100,000 polythene bags for waste removal this year.
He requested everyone to follow hygiene rules, and said that the city corporation would distribute as many as 100,000 masks among the buyers at the cattle markets.
This year, the DNCC has fixed 250 spots for slaughtering. It will also open two hotlines — 09602222333 and 09602222334 — for emergencies.
Chittagong City Corporation (CCC) Mayor Rezaul Karim Chowdhury said that they had selected 304 spots for slaughtering and hoped to dispose of
the waste within 24 hours.
He also asked the government to consider raising the prices of rawhide as the people throw away the skins for not getting fair price, and thus, pollute the environment.
The mayor said that the city corporation authorities would soon start an awareness campaign.
Md Mokbul Hossain, secretary for the Information and Broadcasting Ministry, suggested arranging discussions and talk shows with experts, who would
provide instructions on scientific waste management.