Nearly one thousand Bangladeshis who were either in prison or detention camps in Middle East countries returned to the country in the last 24hours.
The returnees--many of whom are migrant workers--are being allowed to stay in home quarantine. This move increases the risk of Covid-19 infection even more, public experts have opined. The returnees must stay in institutional quarantine and not home quarantine as many lack proper facilities at their homes to properly maintain DGHS guidelines.
At least 1,203 Bangladeshis returned from different countries today.
Of them, around 463 returned from UAE by two separate special flights, 181 returned from Oman by a special chartered flight and 289 returned from Kuwait by a special flight, said Sirazum Munera, a doctor at the health desk at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport.
Another special flight of US-Bangla Airlines brought back 195 Bangladeshi nationals from India's Chennai. Most of them went to India for treatment purposes, sources at the HSIA, said.
Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen in early April said different countries especially UAE, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Kuwait, Qatar, Jordan, Lebanon and Iraq are likely to send back around 29,000 Bangladeshi workers in the next couple of weeks.
Many of these Bangladeshis are now in prisons or detention camps in these countries, sources at the Foreign Ministry said. They have been granted general amnesty due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The Bangladeshi workers who returned to the country in the last 24 hours are a part of the 29,000 Bangladeshi workers scheduled to be sent back from Middle East countries, sources at the HSIA, said.
Dr Munera said all Bangladeshi workers showed health certificates saying they did not have Covid-19. As such they were sent to home quarantine.