People are seen on an overcrowded ferry as they return to their workplaces after the government decided to ease countywide lockdown restrictions at Mawa ferry terminal, Munshiganj, Bangladesh. (REUTERS/Mohammad Ponir Hossain)
BANGLADESH’S government eased the nationwide lockdown on Wednesday (11), enabling offices and shops to reopen after a gap of nearly three weeks.
Dhaka experienced traffic jams as markets reopened and transport operators resumed their services.
The country went into lockdown on July 23 after the Eid-al-Adha holidays, amid increasing coronavirus infections.
While full occupancy is allowed in public transport vehicles, operators are allowed to run only half their fleet. Buses bound for Dhaka and some other industrialised cities were in demand, but there were not many takers for vehicles heading out of those places, according to transport operators.
Bangladesh’s popular ferry services also resumed operations as people went back to their workplaces from their villages.
Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority joint director said ferry operators were told to adhere to standard operating producers and announce health safety guidelines on loudspeakers, The Daily Star reported.
Only export-oriented industries, mainly garment factories, which form the backbone of the country’s economy, were allowed to remain open during the lockdown.
The Covid situation, however, remains grim in the country, according to Worldometers data. It reported 11,164 new infections and 264 fresh fatalities in the country on Tuesday (10).