Dhaka, Mar 22: Cargo handling at the Petrapole port on the India-Bangladesh border came to a halt on Sunday due to 14- hour Janta Curfew to limit the fast-spreading novel coronavirus in the country.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi in an address to the nation last week urged citizens to stay indoors, a move that he said would be a crucial test for a country to assess its abilities to fight the pandemic.
“There’s a ‘people’s curfew’ going on across India from 0700 to 2100 hrs on Sunday, forcing C&F companies and agents, handling workers and transporters to stay home. Cargo flow between the two ports is suspended, said Kartik Chakrabarty," general secretary of Petrapole C&F Agent Staff Association said, adding that the port activities will resume on Monday.
On the other hand, cargo handling at the Benapole port is ongoing and trucks coming from India can offload goods, said Nashidul Haque, superintendent of Benapole Checkpost Cargo Division.
"Hundreds of trucks carrying goods will remain stuck on both sides of the border as the business is stalled for a day," he said.
Passengers are crossing the international check post regularly despite the curfew on the Indian side, said Ahsan Habib, OC of immigration at the Benapole International Checkpost.
Health experts said India's cases have been growing at a rate seen during the early stages of the outbreak in other countries, which subsequently reported exponential increases in infections. (UNI)