He further said, “The new variant has been detected in India as well. Therefore, we have made arrangements for rapid antigen tests in all the ports. The people with symptoms are being taken into isolation. The Institute of Epidemiology Disease Control and Research (IEDCR) has been instructed to identify patients infected with the new virus through genome sequencing. Besides, the hospitals have been asked to remain prepared.”

Referring to the decisions taken by the National Technical Advisory Committee, Ahmedul Kabir said, “There is reluctance among the people in maintaining health guidelines nowadays. We have ordered the authorities concerned to take necessary initiative to grow consciousness among the people in this regard.”

Speaking regarding extending the expiry date of the vaccines, he said, “There is no scope of raising questions regarding extending the expiry date of the vaccines. We have done this after taking consent from the vaccine manufacturing company and approval from the relevant authorities.”

Abul Bashar Mohammed Khurshid Alam, director of the DGHS; Mohammad Shahidullah, president of the National Technical Advisory Committee on coronavirus and DGHS spokesperson Prof Nazmul Alam were among others present at the press conference.