The condition of day labourers and low-income people has not changed much despite the end of the lockdown and reopening of everything.
They are looking for work in the last three days but there was no significant change in their income.
"The lockdown is over but I am not getting any work. Sanitary goods including cement, paints, furniture are not sold much. So my van is not being hired," Mohammad Shahjahan, a rickshaw van driver, told TBS.
Shahjahan said he sold the van for Tk16,000 last month to feed his five-member family. He bought that van again at a cost of Tk21,000 with a monthly installment of Tk3,000.
Day labourers are crowding different labour markets of the capital every day for work. Even if some of them get some work, it is not enough to survive, they said.
On Saturday, about 100 day labourers were seen sitting in the labour market at Moghbazar intersection from dawn.
Saiful Islam, who works as a painter, said, "I still did not get work for a single day since the lockdown was over. It is now 11 o'clock. Even today I don't think I will get a job."
Md Mouzali, a day laborer, said the contractors have not started work yet, so we are not getting work.
"My son is also a day laborer and he also has no job. I could not pay the house rent of Tk5,000 per month for 3 months. There is no work so I have to buy rice and lentils with due payment to survive with my four-member family," he added.
Mouzali said they have not received any government or private assistance yet.
Truck helper Md Rubel said "I got work yesterday. I got Tk300 through dumping a truck of soil. Today I went out again in search of work."
Talking to rickshaw pullers at several corners of the capital including Moghbazar, Bangla Motor and Kalyanpur, this correspondent learned that the income of rickshaw drivers declined after the lockdown.
Mohammad Alamin who came to Dhaka from Bhola a month ago in search of work, said he used to earn Tk700 per day by pulling the rickshaw in Dhaka during lockdown. Now the income is down to Tk400.
Housemaids not allowed into apartments yet for work
While talking to 20 women in Kalyanpur slum, who used to cook and wash clothes in different houses, they said they still can't go to work.
They said the owner of the houses where they worked had told them not to get vaccinated. And when the Covid-19 infection is reduced, they will call them for work.
Jannat used to cook in a house at Mirpur-1 in the capital city. She was fired six months ago.
Jannat said, "I went to work yesterday but was not allowed to enter the house. They told me to get vaccinated, and then tell me when to come."
"We have not gotten any assistance from the government during Covid-induced lockdown," she said.
Ruma's husband is a rickshaw puller. It is difficult for him to run the family on his income. To stand beside him, Ruma sells various things including bangles, clips, lipstick, mirrors along Natun bazar road in Kalyanpur.
She said "sales were closed in the lockdown. Today I bought goods worth Tk3,000. Not a single item was sold till noon."
If the lockdown is not imposed, the goods will be sold, Ruma hopes.
CNG-run auto drivers' income down
Abdul Barek said he could not come out of home with an auto-rickshaw during the lockdown. He is now getting out. I have to pay Tk800 per day to the owner and refuel the vehicle as well. Excluding these, the income is Tk500 per day as passengers are low.
With this money, it is difficult to run a four-member family in the capital city, he said.
Another CNG-run auto-rickshaw driver Alauddin said now more people are going by bus. Those who go out with family or have any urgent work are getting up in auto-rickshaws.
"I earn Tk450 to 500 per day. Before Covid outbreak, I used to earn Tk1,000 every day," he said.