Remain prepared as Covid-19 situation may worsen in winter: PM

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Dhaka, Sept 20: Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina asked all concerned to take preparation right at the moment as the COVID-19 situation may worsen in the upcoming winter.

“Winter is ahead and that’s why the COVID-19 situation may be worse to some extent. So, we have to remain prepared from right now,” she said while receiving donations for the PM’s Relief and Welfare Fund from various organizations including 34 commercial banks.

The prime minister attended a donation handover ceremony through a video conference from her official Ganabhaban residence here.

PM’s Principal Secretary Dr Ahmad Kaikaus received the cheques of donations on behalf of the premier at the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) in the city.

The premier expressed gratitude to the organisations for their generous contributions to the PM’s Relief and Welfare Fund to help the nation combat coronavirus.

In this context, she said, “All have been working with utmost sincerity. That’s why we have been able to face it (the situation arising out of the coronavirus pandemic).”

Referring to her government’s efforts including announcement of stimulus packages to offset the COVID-19 impact on the country’s economy, she said, “We are taking effective measures to keep running the country’s trade and commerce. We have declared stimulus packages. And we are giving whatever necessary (to keep functioning the country’s economy) as our target is to serve the people.”

The premier thanked the Bangladesh Association of Bank (BAB) as they extended their hands whenever the country fell in any crisis.

The Prime Minister requested the BAB to give special attention so that the banks could operate in a proper manner.

“There are some banks which become very weak. In that case, merging (of banks) is required very often. But a proper scrutiny is necessary on which banks are functioning properly and which are not. Keep faith (in me), nothing would be done to this end without any assessment,” she said.

The Prime Minister said her government first took the initiative to open banks in the private sector and they are giving permission to most of the private banks to operate for which huge employments were generated.

Referring to opening bank accounts for farmers at Taka 10, she said that her government had also taken initiatives of making people habituated in using banks in case of transaction of money.

“So, we want that the banks will operate their functions properly. We always consider all of your logical demands that you place (before me). I will consider if you have any problem in running the banks,” she continued.

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