Don’t go out without a mask, says govt

The government has advised everyone to refrain from going outside without wearing a mask amid the COVID-19 resurgence.

The Cabinet Division also asked the local administrations to conduct mobile court operations alongside running awareness campaigns for masks.

The instructions came from a virtual meeting chaired by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina over the use of masks on Monday, said Cabinet Secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam.

“We are seeing a massive resurgence of coronavirus infections in the United States and the countries across Europe. That’s why the prime minister has emphasised face coverings. She has urged everyone to be more careful.”

“Wearing mask is a key tool in the fight against coronavirus transmission. We need to create mass awareness over this as a large swathe of the population in Bangladesh is still reluctant to wear masks.”

The government had made it mandatory for all to wear masks outdoors at the end of July. But many people disregard the rules.

Worldwide coronavirus cases crossed 40 million on Monday, while the disease has killed 1.11 million across the world.

In Bangladesh, the government registered 21 new fatalities from the novel coronavirus in a daily count on Monday, taking the tally so far to 5,681. The caseload surged to 390,206 after another 1,637 people tested positive for COVID-19.

The government has also asked the law-enforcement agencies to implement the order in mosques and the places of public gatherings and worship ahead of Durga Puja, the largest religious festival for Hindus in Bangladesh.

Referring to Sunday’s secretary-level meeting, the cabinet secretary stated that, imams of mosques have also been instructed to make people aware of wearing masks after prayers.

Local administrations have also been asked to implement strict rules over the violation of health protocols issued by the government to curb the COVID-19 pandemic.