The government has decided to open shops and shopping malls in the ongoing lockdown considering the livelihood of the people. Shops and shopping malls will be open from Sunday. An order was issued by the cabinet department on Friday to keep shops and shopping malls open from 10 am to 5 pm. For this, you must follow the hygiene rules prescribed by the government. Public transport is associated with the opening of shops and shopping malls. However, the cabinet order did not mention anything about this.
The order, signed by Rezaul Islam, deputy secretary in the cabinet, said the new directive was issued considering the livelihoods of a large number of people. The management committee of the concerned market or organization will take necessary action regarding the observance of hygiene rules.
An eight-day lockdown began on April 14 to prevent coronavirus infections. The government gave 13 instructions including closing shops and shopping malls during the lockdown. That term ended last Wednesday. The lockdown was then extended to midnight on April 26. Earlier, the Bangladesh Shop Owners Association had demanded the opening of shops and shopping malls. In this regard, they raised their demands at the highest level of government. The government has given strict instructions to the leaders of the shop owners’ association to follow the necessary hygiene rules in shops and shopping malls. Asked about public transport with an official in charge of the cabinet department, he said they have not yet received any instructions in this regard.
Bus owners demand introduction of public transport: A large number of people have left Dhaka and gone to villages before the second phase of lockdown. They started returning to Dhaka yesterday. They are suffering on the way due to lack of vehicles. Going back with too much health risk. Following the decision to open shops from Sunday, bus owners have also demanded the introduction of public transport.
Most of the people returning to the village are footpath shopkeepers, small traders and employees of various shops. Visiting the capital’s Abdullahpur and Gabtali’s Aminbazar yesterday, they were seen returning to Dhaka in CNG-powered autorickshaws, motorcycles, private cars and microbuses. It is learned that a large number of people have gathered at Banglabazar in Shibchar and Daulatdia Ghat in Goalanda to return to Dhaka. Some of these people are crossing the Padma by ferry, or by boat without getting a ferry.
Demanding the introduction of public transport, Khandaker Enayetullah, general secretary of the Dhaka Road Transport Owners’ Association, told Kaler Kantha, “All shops and stalls are being opened.” If the transport is not running, then the people who go to the market will also be in danger. And the people who went to the villages are returning to Dhaka, spending extra money and ignoring the hygiene rules. That is why we demand that public transport be allowed to run. ‘