Coronavirus shutdown extends to Apr 11
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said the government has decided to extend the ongoing nationwide holidays till April 11 to contain the spread of deadly coronavirus.
General holidays of Friday and Saturday will be added to the holidays.
The premier said this while exchanging views on the country’s coronavirus situation with the public representatives and field level government officials through video conference from her official Ganabhaban official residence here.
When the cabinet secretary drew the prime minister’s attention about the extension of holidays till April 9, Sheikh Hasina said it can be extended till April 9, but it will not be a complete shutdown.
“It can be done on a limited scale, and a scope will have to be created for the movement of some people,” she said.
The movement of transports could be limited, she said, adding that the government will review the situation after completion of the 14-day holiday.
Sheikh Hasina added: “Everything can’t be stopped. The essential things will remain in operation. But all the educational institutions such as schools and colleges will remain closed till April 9.”
The premier, however, opined for keeping open the industries by taking all precautionary measures. “We’ve to keep open the industries for producing many (essential) things,” she said.
Sheikh Hasina said the holidays will have to be extended to stem the outbreak of COVID-19 in the villages as many people have already gone to their village homes soon after the announcement of the 10-day general holiday.
In this context, she said, “We will have to take quarantine period into consideration so that this lethal virus can’t spread.”
The prime minister said the government has to allow some relaxations for some sectors on the limited scale.
The government earlier on March 23 declared a nationwide 10-day holiday from March 26 to April 4 shutting down the government and private offices excepting essential and healthcare facilities over the COVID-19 situation.
All were requested to stay-at-home during the holidays unless they have a good reason to leave their homes to buy essentials such as food and for medical and health care purposes as the kitchen markets, food shops, pharmacies, hospitals and all emergency services remained out of the purview of the general holidays.
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