The government has decided to extend the ongoing general holidays until May 30 to prevent the transmission of coronavirus as it continue to claim more lives and infect a larger number of people every day across Bangladesh.
Farhad Hossain, State Minister for Public Administration, confirmed the matter and said Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has directed to extend the holidays.
A gazette notification will be issued on Wednesday or Thursday in this regard, he said.
Strict restrictions will be imposed on transportation, Hossain said adding that no vehicle will be allowed to ply on roads four days before Eid-ul-Fitr and two days after it, except the emergency services.
On March 23, the government declared general holidays from March 26 to April 4 to curb the spread of coronavirus.
Later, the holidays were extended five times until April 25 – first from April 5 to April 9, then from April 10 to April 14, later from April 15 to April 16, then again from April 17 to April 25 and finally, from April 25 to May 5.
However, a notification issued on April 25 also included directive that all the ministries, divisions and their subordinate offices involved in providing emergency services will remain open on a limited scale during the extended general holidays.
On the same day, the Public Administration Ministry said government offices at division, district and upazila levels under 18 ministries and divisions will remain open on a limited scale.
Earlier, the government closed all the educational institutions apart from shutting down the rail, road, river and air communications to prevent the spread of the highly contagious virus.
Amid high risk of coronavirus transmission, some garment factories reopened on April 26 and factory owners claimed they are operating garment factories with the workers available in Dhaka on a limited scale maintaining hygiene issues.
The coronavirus COVID-19 is affecting 212 countries and territories around the world.
So far, a total of 17,822 were found infected and 269 died of COVID-19 until Wednesday in country, according to Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS).