In an unprecedented move, Bangladesh has closed the operations of Daulatdia, the largest brothel in the country located on the bank of river Padma, amidst the outbreak of coronavirus that has infected 20 people in the Islamic Republic. 1500 sex workers are known to work in the brothel and serve around 5000 customers.
Local Police Chief Ashiqur Rahman was quoted as saying, “The brothel at the Daulatdia was closed temporarily as part of precautions against coronavirus. The sex workers were asked not to allow any visitor until April 5.” He revealed that even though prostitution was illegal in the country, law enforcement authorities never interfered in their operations.
Jhumur Begum, a social worker, said, “The sex workers accepted the government order because it’s a serious health issue. But at the same time, we request the authorities help them. If the brothel remains closed for long it will be difficult for them to survive.”The cops had also requested the administration to provide 32 metric tonnes of rice to the sex workers that would help them sustain during the lockdown.
On Wednesday, thousands of Muslims gathered in Raipur town of Lakshmipur district in Bangladesh to recite “healing verses” from the Quran to get rid off the virus, despite the fact that such mass gatherings can accelerate the spread of infection. The event was organised by influential local religious leaders and no permission was sought from the administration. Apparently, people in Raipur “passionately believe” that Islamic sermons are the quick-fix to all their problems in life.
Earlier, Prime Minister of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, Imran Khan, said that the country could not afford a nationwide lockdown, despite 501 Pakistanis tested positive for the deadly Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19). The inability to implement drastic measures to contain the pandemic has largely to do with Pakistan’s crippling economical condition.
“Lockdown means curfew-like situation, which will create unrest in the country and we cannot afford that. It would make poor people more vulnerable”, Khan was quoted as saying.