Thousands returning to Dhaka through Mawa Ghat as markets reopen
Even though the government has extended general holidays until May 16, thousands of people started entering Dhaka through Mawa Ghat on Tuesday, taking the risk of coronavirus transmission following the announcement of market and shop reopening from May 10. Visiting Mawa ferry terminal on Tuesday morning, the UNB correspondent found a large number of people crossing the Padma River by ferries.
All of them were seen hiring three-wheelers, auto-rickshaws, motorbikes, yellow cabs and microbuses to go to Dhaka paying extra fare. Sirajul Kabir, in-charge of Mawa River Police Outpost, said there was low pressure of passengers over the last two days but suddenly it increased on Tuesday. Talking to some people entering Dhaka, this correspondent found that most of them are owners and employees of shops, small businesses, job holders and garment workers.
Md Shafiqul Islam, assistant general manager of Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority, Shimulia ferry terminal, said they are operating nine ferries three during the daytime and six at night — on Shimulia- Kathalbari River route only for carrying emergency goods. Now people are crossing the Padma River by ferries as other river transport remained shut, he added.
Meanwhile, the government decided to allow businesspeople to keep shops and shopping malls open till 4 pm every day maintaining health guidelines during the general holidays extended until May 16 considering Ramadan and Eid-ul-Fitr. In line with the extended general holidays, the Roads and Highways Division (RHD) said the public transport services will also remain suspended until May 16.