June 20, 2021

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The Prime Minister requested everyone to wear masks

To get rid of the coronavirus outbreak, you have to wear a mask with everything else. The more masks are worn, the sooner the people of the country will be free from this disaster. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has given such importance to wearing a mask in the cabinet meeting, said Cabinet Secretary Khandaker Anwarul Islam. The cabinet secretary told reporters after a virtual cabinet meeting on Monday. He said the entire cabinet along with the Prime Minister had made this request to the countrymen.

In a briefing at the Cabinet Division of the Secretariat after the cabinet meeting, Khandaker Anwar said the Prime Minister and the entire cabinet had repeatedly requested it. The Prime Minister also emphasized the need for awareness through the media. The cabinet secretary said, ‘Journalists are also talking about wearing masks in different ways from your place; But even after that it is seen that many people do not wear masks. We all need cooperation in this matter. This is our national disaster, we all need to cooperate to overcome this disaster. We have repeatedly said that it is a community disease. We all have the opportunity to be more vigilant from our respective places. If we all use masks, of course it will be reduced. Request to the media, tell all of you more. Use the mask wherever you are, use the sanitizer.

Context Lockdown: The local administration has been asked to enforce strict prohibitions or lockdowns in districts or certain areas. The local administration has been given the power to take lockdown decisions on the basis of discussions with local people’s representatives. The information was given by the cabinet secretary in response to a question on border districts at risk for coronavirus. He said the mayor and local MPs, district administration and civil surgeons who are present will take a decision after discussing the lockdown.

Not unlimited interest in non-banking: Financial institutions that do not have banking activities (non-banking) have to go to court to declare bankruptcy. The government wants to reduce the huge delay. The Cabinet also approved the draft of Finance Companies Act, 2021 in principle. The cabinet has been monitoring the matter to find a way to declare bankruptcy outside the court before final approval. At the same time, the cabinet has asked the law to include a provision to prevent non-banking institutions from offering unlimited interest rates, as is the case with scheduled banks.

Anwarul Islam said, ‘1993 was the Financial Institutions Act. That is being corrected. He said non-banking financial institutions have announced interest rates of 15 to 18 per cent to attract people. I must remember the young man. Many people lose everything there. It remains to be seen whether the cap will be able to save as much money as possible, and whether the interest rate will be determined. According to the draft proposal, non-banking finance companies will be fined up to a maximum of Rs 1 crore for various irregularities and corruption. Besides, trial will also be held under criminal law. He will be jailed for a maximum of seven years, he said.

With regard to NID: In response to the CEC’s comments on the National Identity Card (NID) activities, the Cabinet Secretary said, ‘This is a previous issue. A decision has already been taken in this regard. Even after that, if there is a need to discuss any issue, we will do it.

Yesterday’s cabinet approved the draft of ‘Bangladesh Homoeopathic Medical Education Act, 2021’. The cabinet has approved a draft agreement with Botswana so that Bangladeshi diplomats and government passport holders can travel to Botswana without a visa. The Bengali and English versions of the National Financial Inclusion Strategy have also been approved. 

Apart from this, the Cabinet also gave policy and final approval to the draft of ‘Leader of the Opposition and Deputy Leader (Privileges and Privileges) Act, 2021’. As this law was enacted during the military rule, new laws are being made to replace it.