Apart from the police, armed forces and BGB will be deployed to enforce the lockdown and other directives
No movement pass will be issued during the upcoming nationwide hard lockdown, starting from Thursday, aimed at taking down the alarming rise in Covid-19 deaths and cases.
During this lockdown, which led thousands of people to leave Dhaka city over the past few days, stricter restrictions on public movement and gathering will be in place from 6am Thursday, July 1, to 12 midnight of July 7.
People were seen travelling to their village homes from Monday morning as well.
Talking to reporters at the Secretariat after the weekly cabinet meeting on Monday, Cabinet Secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam said no movement pass will be issued this time.
“People will have to stay home and be allowed to go out only for emergency purposes, such as medical reasons or for attending funerals,” he added.
Apart from the police, armed forces and Border Guard Bangladesh personnel will be deployed around the country to ensure proper implementation of the lockdown and adherence to government regulations.
Earlier this year, during another phase of lockdown in April, authorities concerned had introduced a movement pass that would allow citizens to stay outside for up to three hours.
An individual seeking a movement pass had to provide his or her name, phone number, date of birth, destination details, valid identification (national identity card, passport, driving licence), and the reason for going outside.
The police then issued an online pass after verifying the information. A pass could be used for one-way movement and another pass had to be acquired for the subsequent return.
However, the issuance and use of movement passes were fraught with problems as the government website was flooded with applications and many were seen misusing the passes.
The cabinet secretary on Monday also said that the government will primarily observe the lockdown for seven days. “If needed, it will be extended.”
Detailed instructions regarding the restrictions will be given on Tuesday, he added.
“This can be called lockdown, shutdown, etc. It will be decided tomorrow [Tuesday], but till now these are strict restrictions,” the secretary added.
Meanwhile, public transports went off streets and shopping malls remained shut in Dhaka and other parts of Bangladesh from Monday morning as the government enforced a “stricter lockdown on a limited scale” in an effort to bring the Covid-19 situation under control.
The alarming surge in cases and deaths had prompted the government recently to announce a three-day so-called lockdown from Monday ahead of an all-out nationwide lockdown from Thursday.
Rickshaws and private vehicles were seen dominating the Dhaka streets on the first day of the “limited lockdown.” People including office-goers were seen waiting on roads for a long time for rickshaws or motorbikes to reach their destinations.
The fresh lockdown will remain in force from 6am Monday to 6am Thursday, when the harder nationwide lockdown will begin.
A total of 119 people died in Bangladesh in the 24 hours between Saturday and Sunday morning, the biggest figure since the pandemic hit the country in March last year.
During the same 24 hours, 5,268 more cases were also recorded following 24,400 sample tests, according to the health directorate.
Until Sunday, the country’s total Covid-19 death toll stood at 14,172 and the total number of cases at 888,406.