Over 1,200 people die with COVID-19 symptoms

Ahammad Foyez | Published: 01:14, Jun 26,2020


At least 1,271 people died in the country with COVID-19 symptoms from March 8 to June 20 as the people still struggle to test themselves for the deadly virus.

The data was revealed by Dhaka University’s Centre for Genocide Studies on Thursday as it was monitoring the COVID-19 situation in the country and preparing the study in a joint effort with Bangladesh Peace Observatory, a UNDP-funded research facility.

Of the 1,271 such deaths, highest 386 was in Chattogram, 303 in Dhaka, 133 in Barishal, 132 in Khulna, 123 in Rajshahi, 78 in Sylhet, 68 in Rangpur and 48 in Mymensingh.

The data showed that the death with COVID-like symptoms increased significantly after the end of the general holiday announced to contain the coronavirus spread.

In the last week of the holiday (May 24-30) the death with COVID-like symptoms stood at 73, the study said, adding that in the first week after the end of the holiday (May 31 to June 6) the number of death with COVID-like symptoms was 154, which is more than double.

It was 206 in the second week after the end of the holiday and 174 in the third week, the study calculated.

Director of the centre Imtiaz Ahmed told New Age that the number of deaths with COVID-19 symptoms was increasing as people were refused treatment by many private hospitals and test facilities were not enough yet as per demand.

He said that the delay in COVID-19 test report delivery was also a reason for the increase.

The daily tests should be hiked to at least 30,000 immediately to prevent such deaths from occurring without testing, he said.

He also urged the government to ensure surveillance over the operation of private hospitals as they were still refusing patients even after several instructions against such unprofessional acts.

He said that a mechanism should be introduced to make public on a daily basis the number of vacant seats at  private hospitals.

The report said that at least 18 people were killed and 550 injured in 131 incidents over the novel coronavirus-related issues between March 8 and June 13.

The study also made an index of 156 incidents of street protests which took place between June 20 and April 26 while 44 per cent were held for wages, 30 per cent for relief, aid or food, 15 per cent against the lockdown rules, for accountability, against lay-offs, for the waiver of rents or tuition fees, 6 per cent for irregularities in relief and other food aid distribution programme, and the rest 5 per cent against the hike of bus fares.

The study said that 508 people were arrested during this time for their alleged involvement in relief misappropriation while 10,603 people were fined during the period for different irregularities related to COVID-19 relief distribution.

During the same period, 87 people were arrested allegedly for spreading rumours in 84 incidents across the country, the report said.

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