Dhaka streets empty again as law enforcers go tough

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Staff Reporter:

As many city dwellers came out of their homes during the last few days unnecessarily defying the government’s stay-at-home instruction, members of the Bangladesh Police and Bangladesh Army took an aggressive stance on Thursday, forcing people to stay indoors again.

The number of vehicles, including private cars and CNG-run auto-rickshaws, was also thin on Thursday compared to the last several days since the government announced holidays from March 26 in an effort to curb the virus.

The government announced the general holidays from March 26 until April 4 in the first phase and later extended that until March 9 asking people to stay home and maintain social distancing and overseas returnees to remain in compulsory 14-day home-quarantine to prevent the coronavirus spread as Bangladesh is a densely-populated.

On March 23, the government decided to deploy members of the Armed Forces in aid to civil power across the country and they started their activities on March 25. However, many were reluctant to comply with the directives as they came out of their homes unnecessarily.

Under such circumstances, police and Bangladesh Army personnel went tough on Thursday in a bid to implement the government directives.

Deputy Commissioner (DC) of Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) Masudur Rahman said both police and Army members performed their duties very strictly in the capital on Thursday to ensure that people do not unnecessarily come out of their homes.

Police set up a number of check-posts at important points of the capital and asked approaching people about the reasons behind venturing out, he said.

“In reply, most of them said they came out for emergency needs,” the police official said, adding that those who failed to give any satisfactory reply were given a warning.

Sources at the Police Headquarters said over 2 lakh members of the Bangladesh Police have been working relentlessly from the very beginning following the government directives to prevent the spread of coronavirus and ensure the welfare of the country and the nation.

They are trying to ensure that people maintain social distancing and stay at homes across the country.

They are carrying out various activities, including providing food to the jobless, day-labourers, destitute and poor people, alongside conducting awareness campaign every day as part of implementing the directives.

Meanwhile, Inspector General of Police Dr Javed Patwary on Thursday urged all his force’s members to keep up the current successful trend of activities in implementing government directives to ensure social distancing and home-quarantine.

“I feel extremely proud and honoured as every member of Bangladesh Police stands beside the country and the common people during the corona crisis. I extend my sincere thanks and gratitude to every member of Bangladesh Police,” he said.

The IGP, however, said everyone must ensure the highest safety for themselves, their subordinate members, colleagues and families in addition to providing services to the people. “Besides, you must be very careful in providing urgent services under special circumstances to ordinary people so that there’s no public gathering,” he said.

Meanwhile, army started taking a tough stance from Thursday morning against those are violating home-quarantine rules and not maintaining social distancing in the capital and elsewhere across the country, said Rezaul Karim Shammi, assistant director at the Inter Services Public Relation (ISPR) Directorate.

Besides, members of Navy are working hard to ensure that people in coastal upazilas maintain social distancing and overseas returnees remain in home-quarantine.

Both Army and Navy members are also spraying disinfectant on streets across the country alongside creating awareness among people about coronavirus.unb

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