Local admin given authority to enforce lockdown


UNB, Dhaka

District administrations have been given the authority to enforce lockdown in their areas if the Covid-19 situation deteriorates there, the cabinet secretary said on Monday.

The government has already given such an instruction to local administrations, said Cabinet Secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam at a press briefing after a virtual Cabinet meeting held with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair.

“Deputy commissioners, civil surgeons, chairmen and mayors have already been told that if they think the situation would be harmful (deteriorate) in any place, they can close down that area,” said Anwarul Islam.

The ongoing lockdown in Chapainawabganj was enforced as per the suggestion from the field administration, he said.

“We’ve told other district administrations that if they think it necessary, they can enforce a lockdown there. They also have authority to enforce lockdown only in bordering areas, not keeping the entire district under it (the restriction),” he said.

Anwarul Islam made the remarks in reply to a question over the suggestion of the Directorate General of Health Services to bring seven bordering districts under the lockdown.

The prime minister joined the meeting from her official residence Ganobhaban, while other Cabinet members from the Bangladesh Secretariat.

Earlier, Health Minister Zahid Malek said, “The health ministry would recommend a lockdown wherever an increase in infections would be found. The risk of creating a crisis remains if it is delayed. So lockdown should be imposed so that the infection does not spread across the country.”

Meanwhile, the ongoing lockdown in Chapainawabganj has been extended for another week to prevent the transmission of coronavirus in the district.

Moreover, the district administration of Noakhali has started imposing house-wise lockdown in the district due to the recent surge in coronavirus cases.