Covid-19 infection among VIPs has become quite noticeable in Bangladesh with several ministers, former and incumbent lawmakers, top bureaucrats, businesspeople, and leading frontline healthcare officials having tested positive in the past few days.
At least a dozen former and incumbent members of the parliament (MPs) have also tested positive for Covid-19. Some are receiving treatment at various hospitals, while others are under home quarantine.
State Minister for Religious Affairs Sheikh Md Abdullah, who passed away at the capital's Combined Military Hospital (CMH) in Dhaka on Saturday night, was infected with the novel coronavirus.
Former health minister and ruling party lawmaker Mohammad Nasim also passed away at Dhaka's Bangladesh Specialised Hospital on Saturday. He tested positive for Covid-19 and was rushed into surgery after suffering a brain hemorrhage.
Among the big-shots, Liberation War Affairs Minister AKM Mozammel Haque and his wife Laila Arjumand Banu were admitted to the CMH after testing positive for the Covid-19 on June 12.
Sufi Abdullah Maruf, the ministry's public relations officer, confirmed that the duo was admitted to the hospital on Saturday night for better treatment.
Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) Affairs Minister Bir Bahadur Ushwe Sing was diagnosed with Covid-19 on June 6. The next day, he was admitted to the CMH.
Former Dhaka lawmaker and Awami League leader Mockbul Hossain died from the novel coronavirus on May 24. He was undergoing treatment at the CMH.
Kamrunnahar Putul, a former ruling party MP of the Bogura reserve seat died of Covid-19 last month. Jatiya Party's former MP of Satkhira 4, AHM Golam Reza tested positive for the novel coronavirus on Friday. He is receiving treatment at home, reports UNB.
Former Sylhet City Corporation (SCC) Mayor Badar Uddin Ahmed Kamran died from coronavirus infection at a hospital in the capital early Monday. He was 69.
Among other incumbent lawmakers of the ruling party, the following have contracted Covid-19: Moslem Uddin Ahmed of Chittagong 8, Faridul Haque Khan of Jamalpur 2, Mohammad Ebadul Karim Bulbul of Brahmanbaria 5, Mustafizur Rahaman Chowdhury of Chittagong 16, Shahiduzzaman Sarker of Naogaon 2, Ranajit Kumar Roy of Jashore 4, and ABM Fazle Karim Chowdhury of Chattogram 6.
However, some of them have recovered from the virus.
Defence Secretary Abdullah Al Mohsin Chowdhury, who is fighting the novel coronavirus at the ICU of CMH, was promoted to senior secretary on Sunday. He was admitted to that hospital a few days ago after testing positive for Covid-19.
He was shifted to the ICU on Saturday afternoon after his condition deteriorated.
Health Education and Family Planning Division Secretary Ali Nur was infected with the novel coronavirus along with his wife. They have now been in isolation for the last five days at their home, according to the Public Relations Division of the Health Ministry.
National Professor Dr Anisuzzaman tested positive for the novel coronavirus after his death at the CMH on May 14. Syed Manzur Elahi, a leading businessman and his wife Niloufer Manzur were found Covid-19 positive last month. Niloufer Manzur passed away in the last week of May.
Kutub Uddin Ahmed, chairman of Envoy group, tested Covid-19 positive in May. Additionally, Morshedul Alam, a director of S Alam group died of Covid-19 the same month. Mohammad Taslim Akhtar, chairman of Prince Garments died of the virus in April.
Dr Abul Kalam Azad, director general of the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS), also tested positive for the novel coronavirus. After recovering, he returned to the office this month.
Professor Dr Mozaffar Hossain, head of the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of Dhaka Medical College Hospital and Dr Uttam Kumar Barua, director of Shaheed Suhrawardy Medical College and Hospital tested positive for Covid-19 this month.
Around 37 doctors have died from the novel coronavirus so far, including Dr Sajjad Hossain – anesthesiologist and ICU in-charge of the BRB Hospital – who passed away on Saturday night.