Bangladesh is relying on India to pull through and deliver COVID-19 vaccine doses. Until then, health officials have put the country on lockdown. And while infections have started dropping, the government has decided to extend the measures, for now. But that is turning out to be terribly tough for the poorest people in the country.
There are many new mouths to feed in the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka. The coronavirus pandemic and the lockdown are hitting people hard - especially those already straining to make ends meet.
For many, the food provided by this charity is all they have to eat at the end of their daily Ramadan fast or Iftar
The government imposed a strict nationwide lockdown in April to try to contain a massive surge in infections. Officials are optimistic that the measures are working as cases appear to be falling. But the restrictions are taking a heavy toll. More than two thirds of people in Bangladesh have been forced to stop work or close their businesses at least for a time because of the pandemic.
But the government is resisting pressure to open up more quickly saying this would lead to more casualties especially with the end of Ramadan approaching in the middle of May.
They’re also concerned that what is happening in India could come to Bangladesh. They say if the Indian variant is allowed to circulate on the streets of Bangladesh the consequences would be devasting. They’re urging Bangladeshis not to let their guard down - despite their desire to get back to normal.
For many though the situation is already dire - and will only get worse if the pandemic is not brought under control.
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