At least 312 Bangladeshis have been brought back from the coronavirus-hit China on February 1.
Many other countries including India have also evacuated their nationals from the country amid the coronavirus outburst.
A number of Bangladeshis returned during the Chinese New Year holidays and many are in the process of returning. However, many Bangladeshis including businessmen and professionals are still residing in China with their family.
One of them is Dr Md Rasadujjaman, an associate professor of Dhaka University of Engineering and Technology in Gazipur. He is also a postdoctoral fellow at North China University of Technology in Beijing.
In a recent conversation with The Business Standard, he narrated the current situation of Bangladeshis living in the virus-hit China.
"I moved to Beijing on July 30 last year with my wife and four-year-old son. Right now, we are all very worried about coronavirus. Although Wuhan is over 1,000 km away from Beijing, we are living in fear," said Rasadujjaman. He also mentioned thus far 191 people in Beijing have been diagnosed with the virus. Of them, one has died.
"The campus is deserted due to the Chinese New Year holidays. A few foreign students who did not go home, are now leaving in fear of the outbreak of the virus," he said adding that there were three other Bangladeshi students on the campus, but two of them finally changed their mind and left for Bangladesh.
Rasadujjaman said the university has established a check-post at the university gate and turned the campus off-limits for outsiders. In addition, anyone leaving the campus must register their name before leaving. Upon return, they should again register their name and have their body temperature checked.
"The restaurant that sells halal food for Muslim students on the campus is open. In addition, food and other essentials can be brought from outside, but you need to tell the guards to get those for you," he said adding that all classes for the upcoming semester will remain suspended until the virus outbreak comes under control.
Rasadujjaman said his family members in Bangladesh are asking him to return to Bangladesh. "I think we are safe here," he said adding that the wait at the airport and on the plane can potentially put them, especially his son, at greater risk of attracting the virus.
"The situation can be very severe if the virus spreads in Bangladesh," he opined.
Rasadujjaman said the Chinese government and the university have taken all measures to treat anyone infected with the virus.
Talking to The Business Standard, Muhammad Iqbal Hossain, an engineer working and living in Shanghai said people in his locality are panicked, even after the authorities concerned have taken up the highest precautionary measures to prevent the virus outbreak.
He also claimed that rumours spread by the media have created panic, and have made the situation worse.
"Residents of my apartment complex are still living in some ease as the authorities have taken adequate precautionary measures," he added.
He mentioned that he gets masks regularly from his office and that people who have come to the complex from other provinces recently are being strictly monitored.
"They are being monitored for 14 days starting from the day of their arrival," he said adding the lobby, elevator areas and other common spaces in the complex are being cleaned with antiseptic frequently.
"I will request my countrymen not to worry about us," he said.