Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal today said the invited guests must bring their respective Covid-19 negative certificates to join the Birth Centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the Golden Jubilee of Independence events.
"Covid-19 negative certificate is compulsory for invited guests to attend the Birth Centenary of Bangabandhu and the Golden Jubilee of Independence programmes," he told reporters after a meeting of the sub-committee on security at Bangladesh Secretariat.
The minister, also convener of the sub-committee, said a 10-day programme on the occasion of the birth centenary of Bangabandhu and Golden Jubilee of Independence will be held at the National Parade Ground from March 17 to 26.
The security sub-committee will take necessary security measures to hold the two major events peacefully at the venue, Kamal stated. He said, "It is requested to abide by the health guidelines of the government in view of the Covid-19 pandemic. Everyone has to come to the venue with coronavirus negative certificate."
Kamal said necessary steps would be taken to bring foreign diplomats to the event, adding, "Necessary security measures will be taken inside and outside hotels for the foreign guests."
He said intelligence surveillance will be ensured at all events along with keeping ambulances, fire services and emergency medical teams.
The minister said a control room at the National Parade Ground will also be set up to coordinate the overall security and all kinds of utility services will be there. "Besides, arrangements will be ensured to eradicate mosquito menace," Kamal added.
Chief Coordinator of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Birth Centenary Celebration National Implementation Committee Dr Kamal Abdul Naser Chowdhury said, "We are organizing the event here on a limited scale. It is not possible to hold it on a large scale following health guidelines during the Covid-19 pandemic."
He said necessary measure have been taken to hold the programme peacefully as the entire programme will be broadcast all over the world, adding, "It's a mega programme so that everyone can watch it. That's why a production team is working on it."
"We will make special arrangements on those days when the heads of the states or governments of different countries will attend… Under special arrangements, about 500 people will be invited from different sectors and guests will be invited in phases," Chowdhury said.
He said, "Though we have to follow health rules, we are informing every invitee to test Covid-19. It is mandatory. It will be valid for 48 hours. They will bring negative report to avoid untoward situation."
"We want to have a beautiful ceremony during the Covid-19 pandemic situation, following health rules. We also want to show our ability to hold such a mega programme during this situation," the chief coordinator said.
He said out of the 10 days of the programme, functions on four days will be held with physical attendance live, adding, "The rest six days' programmes will be broadcast live without guests." Responding to a question on how many heads of states or governments will join the programmes, Chowdhury said the heads of states and governments and dignitaries from different countries will join the ceremony through video messages.
"The Foreign Ministry has informed us that the dignitaries are expressing their interest to join the programme. We will let you know later who will be connected," he said.
State Minister for Foreign Affairs Shahriar Alam, State Minister for Public Administration Farhad Hossain, Inspector General of Police (IGP) Dr Benazir Ahmed and other officials were present on the occasion.