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Coronavirus And Fate of Impoverished People

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06th-Apr-2020       
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Tanvir Ahmed Rasel :
Like others, Mofiz Mia is a rickshaw puller in the capital. He has three daughters and one son. He left his house early in the morning searching for his livelihood with his hired rickshaw. As undeclared lockdown is going on whole the country, his income drastically come down. After pulling rickshaw whole day long he earned 150 taka where he could easily earn at least 600 taka in previous time. He returned home with depression and hunger in his eyes. Mofiz Mia is a part of figure of low income people. Such miseries and troubles have already affected millions of impoverished people in Bangladesh.
The pandemic coronavirus has already attacked Bangladesh. Many people have been placed in the home quarantine on suspicion corona affected. As a preventive measure, people are staying at home. As a result, people of low income who are suffering a great. Not only the health risk, but also they are facing great crisis of food.
Hawkers, coolies or day laborers have been exposed to extreme danger. Hawkers or coolies usually make their living in public places. These working people have become workless as public meetings are banned during this arising crisis. Many poor people earn their livelihood by pulling rickshaw, auto rickshaw or CNG hired from the proprietor. The garment sector of Bangladesh is also in crisis where about 40 lakh workers work here.
Many employees are being unemployed because of the closure of hotels, restaurants, shops. Due to the Corona situation, some people are stocking food in fear of closing shop. Again, by capitalizing on corona issue, some unscrupulous businessmen are creating artificial  crisis of necessary goods. As a result, the prices of essential commodities are rising which is another panic to these people.
According to the World Bank, about two and a half million people live below the poverty line in Bangladesh. They eat by hand to mouth.  What will happen to these low-income people in the event of lockdown or even in the current situation?
 In the meantime, the government has postponed electricity and gas bills until June, which is a pretty good and timely decision. In order to ensure the overall benefit of the lives of these low income day laborers, it is very important to come forward the rich man of the society besides the government.
(Tanvir Ahmed Rasel, Department of Pharmacy, Cumilla University;
email- tanvirahmedcou555@gmail. com)

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