BNP slams govt for relaxing ‘lockdown’

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Dhaka, May 19: BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam on Tuesday voiced concern that the government has pushed the country towards a ‘dangerous situation’ by relaxing the ‘lockdown’.“The DMP is announcing the reopening of restaurants and shops. It’s completely contrary to social distancing rules. we’ve seen in the newspapers that thousands of people are gathering in Old  Dhaka, ignoring the social distancing rules. It’s usual that thousands of people will take to the streets if the lockdown is eased,” he said.

The BNP leader further said, “If it continues, the country will head towards a dire consequence. The government has pushed the country towards a dangerous situation by easing the lockdown and not properly tackling the virus.”

Fakhrul came up with the remarks at a press conference at BNP Chairperson’s Gulshan Office.

He alleged that the government has been demonstrating its hegemony and arrogance. “They’ve exposed their lack of farsightedness, coordination, and indifference and obstinacy in every step of dealing with the pandemic. The government has to take the responsibility for the deaths from corona.”

The BNP leader questioned as to why the government did not take steps to keep people indoors and enforce the lockdown when it declared the public holidays and extended that in different phases. “It’s manifested the government’s incompetency.”

Pointing at the long queues of people for undergoing Covid-19 test, he slammed the government for serious mismanagement in tackling the coronavirus situation.

Fakhrul also criticised the ruling party leaders for what he said indulging in plundering and misappropriation of relief and the government assistances meant for the poor and shutdown affected people.

“We called upon the government to create a national unity and form a body of all parties to face the corona situation, but they didn’t pay heed to it. The plundering that is now going on could have been checked had the representatives of all other parties and professional bodies been involved in the process,” he observed.

The BNP leader alleged that the government has so far given relief materials mainly among the ruling party leaders and activists, depriving the common people and those belong to other parties.

After misappropriating the relief materials like rice, pulses and oil, he said the Awami League leaders plundered the money allocated for 50 lakh jobless poor people.

Fakhrul renewed BNP’s demand for engaging army in the process of relief distribution for ensuring transparency and checking  irregularities and plundering.

He said their party distributed relief materials among 31.27 lkah poor families as of May 17 and 1.25 crore people benefited from it.

Besides, he said, Doctors Association of Bangladesh, a platform of pro-BNP doctors, distributed around 2,000 PPEs among the physicians of different private medical colleges alongside providing people with treatment online.

Fakhrul demanded the government take proper steps so that farmers and growers of seasonal fruits like mango and litchi get the fair prices of their produces.