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The educational institutions, however, will remain closed until 31 August, as per the latest announcement of the government. The plan is to open the educational institutions gradually if the Covid-19 situation comes somewhat under control and the government can arrange sufficient vaccines.

After going through “strict restrictions” almost everything including public transport have resumed from yesterday (Wednesday) as per an order the government issued earlier this week. The cabinet division order said 50 per cent of public transport will commute in the cities.

From 11 August, 50 per cent of buses in all routes can carry passengers with full capacity, it said. However, halving the number of public buses has raised debate.

Cabinet secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam on Monday said that halving the number of buses on road would reduce external pressure on traffic management in cities like Dhaka and Chattogram.

The decision has been taken following a series of discussions with the leading administrative and police officials, transport owners and workers, the cabinet secretary added.

When asked, he elaborated that local administrations have been given charge to coordinate with law enforcement agencies, transport owners and staff while fixing a new roster for the public buses.

During the relaxed Covid-19 restrictions, public buses could carry passengers half of their capacity. However, the cabinet division on Sunday said public transport on road, rail and waterways can carry passengers with full capacity.

To stem the coronavirus infection, the government imposed restrictions from 5 April this year. After the Eid-ul-Azha “strict restriction,” imposed from 23 July, was supposed to end on 5 August but it was extended until 10 August. The restrictions are relaxed from 11 August.

Earlier, the cabinet division order regarding this said that all government, semi-government, autonomous and private offices, banks, and financial institutions will remain open maintaining health guidelines. Malls and shops could remain open from 10:00am to 8:00pm. All the industrial factories will run maintaining health guidelines. However, the hotels and restaurants can remain open from 10:00am to 8:00pm with half of their capacity. The Supreme Court will issue directives regarding the court.

Today’s order said all the tourist spots, resorts, community centres and amusement parks will also open from 19 August. It also asked authorities to strictly maintain health guidelines including wearing mask. If any lax is found in this, authorities of concerned office will have to take the responsibility and legal actions would be taken against them, it added.

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