BNP on Monday cancelled the party’s programmes marking the Independence Day in the wake of growing number of coronavirus cases in the country.
BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir came up with the announcement at a press conference at BNP chairperson’s Gulshan office.
“We’ve cancelled our all programmes across the country to celebrate the National Day and the Independence Day. We call upon our leaders and activists to remain alert and avoid any public rally and mass gathering,” he said.
The BNP leader also urged their party leaders and activists to work for creating awareness among people about the coronavirus following all the rules and personal hygiene.
Usually, BNP leaders place wreaths at the Savar National Memorial, its founder Ziaur Rahman’s grave and arrange discussion programmes every year to mark the Independence Day.
About the coronavirus situation, Fakhrul said the government should have given importance to the issue of maintaining social distancing and isolation of people at the initial stage to prevent the spread of the virus. “They’ve now started doing so and taken some steps now after buying time.”
He said the government must intensively monitor the situation and implement the steps it has taken to contain the outbreak of the virus.
The BNP leader warned that the nation will face a serious disaster if the government fails to contain the spread of the deadly virus in the densely populated Bangladesh.
He said though the government confirmed 33 cases of the coronavirus in the country, people are not getting actual information about how many people genuinely affected by the virus as the IEDCR is the only place for conducting the test to identify it.
Fakhrul voiced concern that the number of coronavirus patients are growing as six lakh people who returned home from different countries spread to rural areas due to the government’s ‘indifference’ and lack of coordination.
He said the government should prepare more hospitals with necessary equipment to deal with the coronavirus patients.
The BNP leader demanded the government to take necessary steps to keep their imprisoned party chairperson Khaleda Zia safe from the virus.
“We contacted the authorities concerned to ensure safety of her (Khaleda). They’ve assured us of doing so,” he added.
Fakrul also renewed their party’s demand for the release of Khaleda Zia on humanitarian ground.