POST TIME: 9 April, 2020 08:54:44 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 9 April, 2020 11:26:25 AM
Police take tougher approach in coronavirus battle
Independent Online/UNB

Police take tougher approach in coronavirus battle

Police have taken a number of steps, such as locking down areas or buildings, distributing relief materials and rescheduling market timings, to enforce social distancing and keep people at home to prevent coronavirus outbreak.

On Wednesday afternoon, Sher-e-Bangla Nagar police put Motaharer slum with 300-350 families under lockdown after one of its residents tested positive for coronavirus.

Chawkbazar Police Station’s Officer-in-Charge Moudud Hawladar said they locked down 150-200 houses on the first lane and second lane of Khawaza Dewan alley in Old Dhaka on Tuesday afternoon.

Besides, four other houses in Gulshan, Badda, Nikunja and Bashundhara were also put under lockdown on the same day as COVID-19 cases were reported from those areas, said Deputy Commissioner (Gulshan division) of Dhaka Metropolitan Police Sudip Kumar Chakraborty.

Two multi-storied buildings with 18-20 families and a tin-shed house near Mirpur-1 overbridge were locked down on Sunday after two members of a family, living in the area, got infected with coronavirus, said Officer-in-Charge of Mirpur Police Station Mostafizur Rahman.

DMP Deputy Commissioner (Media) Masudur Rahman said they are locking down areas where COVID-19 patients were detected.

One of the first confirmed cases was in Mirpur’s Tolarbagh. Subsequently, 40 buildings in Uttar Tolarbagh were put under lockdown in phases as several more residents of the area tested positive.

Several buildings at Shah Ali Bagh, Kalawalapara, Kafrul, Mirpur-11 and Mirpur-13 have been put under lockdown as several residents of those areas were found coronavirus positive.

The DMP on Monday ordered closure of recognised kitchen markets and super shops in the capital by 7pm and grocery stores and small shops by 2pm. However, medicine shops can remain open round the clock.

Police said they decided to reschedule the timetable for kitchen market, super shops and grocery shops as it was getting difficult to ensure social distancing due to reluctance of some city dwellers.

Results of the initiatives are visible now as the number of people out on the streets has come down compared to last week.

DC Rahman said they have also been distributing cooked food and relief materials among the destitute so that no one goes hungry during the government-announced general holidays to prevent coronavirus outbreak.

The government announced the holidays from March 26 until April 4 in the first phase and later extended it until April 14. It asked people to stay at home and maintain social distancing and ordered overseas returnees to remain in compulsory 14-day home-quarantine.

Bangladesh recorded 218 coronavirus cases and 20 deaths until Wednesday.

The virus, first reported in China, has infected well over a million people around the world and killed more than 80,000 of them.