Border with India to remain shut for 14 days: FM

Bangladesh has decided to close its border with India for any kind of movement except that of cargoes for the next 14 days from Monday to control the spread of the deadly Coronavirus.

"Yes, but the movement of cargoes carrying goods will continue," Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen told UNB over the phone on Sunday.

The decision taken against the backdrop of the worsening covid-19 situation will become effective from 6am on Monday.

As per the decision, general movements of humans between Bangladesh and India will temporarily stay suspended through the land ports.

The Bangladeshi citizens currently travelling to India for treatment and having visas with validity for less than 15 days could enter Bangladesh through only Benapole, Akhaura and Burimari after taking permission from Bangladesh Missions in New Delhi, Kolkata, and Agartala and with a mandatory Covid-negative certificate done through PCR test within seventy-two hours of entry.

People entering Bangladesh through this process would have to stay officially quarantined for two weeks.

Except for the aforementioned three land ports, all kinds of human movements through all other land ports between the two countries would completely stay suspended for two weeks.

The vehicles carrying imported goods from India would have to be properly sterilised before entering Bangladesh borders.

The drivers and helpers concerned would have to observe the Covid-19 safety protocol strictly.

Railroads will be encouraged for export and import of goods between the two countries in this period.

Bangladesh Missions in New Delhi, Kolkata and Agartala would convey the relevant information in this regard to the authorities concerned in India in the light of the friendly relations between the two countries.

The above decisions will be in effect for two weeks and will be revised in due time, said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The decisions have been taken in an inter-ministerial meeting chaired by the Foreign Secretary (Senior Secretary) Masud Bin Momen and attended by High Commissioner of Bangladesh to India; Secretary, Security Services Division, Ministry of Home Affairs; Secretary (East), Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Additional Secretary, Cabinet Division; and representatives of PMO, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Home Affairs, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Ministry of Commerce, BGB and Bangladesh Missions in Kolkata and Agartala.

Bangladesh is operating special flights to Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain and Singapore to facilitate departure of expatriate workers to those countries.

India’s crematoriums and burial grounds are being overwhelmed by the devastating new surge of infections tearing through the populous country with terrifying speed, depleting the supply of life-saving oxygen to critical levels and leaving patients to die while waiting in line to see doctors, reports AP from New Delhi.

For the fourth straight day, India on Sunday set a global daily record for new infections, spurred by an insidious, new variant that emerged here, undermining the government’s premature claims of victory over the pandemic.

The 349,691 confirmed cases over the past day brought India’s total to more than 16.9 million, behind only the United States.

The Indian Health Ministry reported another 2,767 deaths in the past 24 hours, pushing India’s Covid-19 fatalities to 192,311.

Source: United News of Bangladesh