With the country having entered the fifth day of the weeklong strict lockdown on Sunday, public movement and vehicles increased on most city streets, when compared to the last four days.
Even long tailbacks were seen on Airport Road, Merul Badda and Kawranbazar areas. Police said they barricaded the roads to control traffic, which led to tailbacks.
In the meantime, shop owners on Sunday demand that shopping malls and shops be allowed to reopen.
Many people were seen wandering in the alleys violating the restrictions. Besides, there were huge public gatherings in kitchen markets.
People are now leaving their homes showing emergency or with a movement pass. Hundreds of private cars, covered vans, CNG-run auto-rickshaws and motorbikes ran on roads. There was the same situation in Shahbagh, Banglamotor, Karwan Bazar intersection, Farmgate, Badda, Rampura, Mouchak, and Moghbazar.
However, according to police officials, most people were leaving their homes either showing emergency under 18 permitted categories or a movement pass.
Several officers of Dhaka Metropolitan Police claimed that they were taking actions against the commuters who were violating restrictions.
Restrictions seemed a bit loosened as police at some checkpoints were seen checking only motorbikes. They hardly checked other types of vehicles.
In the city's Shahbagh intersection area, private cars were seen running on streets in a higher number. Many pedestrians alongside the higher volume of rickshaws, motorbikes and bicycles were also observed there.
Despite being one of the most crucial points of intercity communication, the police officials posted at the Shahbagh checkpoint were rarely seen questioning the passersby or drivers.
Humayra Begum, a resident of Mirpur, came to visit her ailing relative at Dhaka Medical College Hospital without any movement pass.
"If the police had asked, I would let them know about my emergency but the police officials at checkpoints on the way did not do any inquiry today," she said.
Golam Mostafa, an inspector of DMP Ramna Zone, said as people have been allowed to move for causes under 18 categories, the number of people gathering on the streets has increased.
"Some are going to work in RMG factories, some are visiting patients and so on. When we interrogate we see almost all of them fall under any of 18 permitted categories," he told The Business Standard.
Meanwhile, people turned out in huge numbers to submit samples for Covid-19 tests in front of the RT-PCR lab of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU) set up at Betar Bhaban.
In the city's Abdullahpur area, a huge number of private cars were seen clogging the flyover.
However, the police officials working at nearby checkpoints claimed that most private cars and pedestrians came out in emergencies.
"Almost everyone is holding a government-provided movement pass. If we find anyone roaming without any reason, we fine them," said Morshedul Islam, traffic sergeant of Ramna division.
The weeklong strict lockdown was imposed from 14 April to curb the spread of Covid-19 in the country.
Shop owners demand reopening of markets, shopping malls
Bangladesh Shop Owners; Association has demanded the reopening of all shopping malls, shops and markets across the country from 22 April.
The demand came from a press conference organised by the association at the National Press Club on Sunday morning. President of the association Md Helal Uddin read out a written statement.
Earlier, the government issued a gazette notification saying all shops and markets across the country will remain closed during the lockdown, while online sales will be allowed only after maintaining hygiene rules. Besides, kitchen markets and grocery shops will remain open from 8 am to 4 pm daily.