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Tk 1 million in fines for crossing Padma River amid lockdown

  • Munshiganj Correspondent,
    Published: 2021-07-24 15:38:02 BdST

People have been heading crossing the Padma River near the Shimulia port in Munshiganj in an attempt to reach Dhaka despite the current lockdown and warnings about strict punishments.

Mobile courts have judged several travellers in the past 24 hours and collected some Tk 1 million in fines from the area.

Several people slipped in between freight vehicles to try and cross the Padma River on Saturday morning. But, upon reaching Shimulia, they found there was no transport and had to set off on foot.

“We are only allowing emergency vehicles and freight vehicles to cross,” said Kawsar Hamid, an assistant commissioner of land from Louhajang Upazila. “We aren’t allowing anyone to travel without sufficient cause.”

“We have set up a checkpoint at every intersection and are enforcing lockdown restrictions thoroughly. Anyone breaching these restrictions will be fined.”

Asked about those passengers who had travelled across the Padma to Shimulia, he said it was outside his jurisdiction and that the responsibility lay with the authorities on the other side of the river.”

“But we are warning passengers who arrive at the port about health restrictions,” he said. “Loudspeaker announcements are informing the people. Those who aren’t wearing masks are fined for violating health restrictions. Fourteen mobile courts have collected Tk 1,051,800 in fines over 71 cases in the past 24 hours. One individual was even sentenced to six months in prison.”

Executive magistrates, the BGB, the army and the police are helping to implement lockdown measures.