Despite of high risk as cyclone Amphan approaching, residents of different char areas and riverside in Barishal are showing reluctance to go to cyclone shelters.
A sources of Barishal District Administration's control room said, 1,071 shelter centres including different schools were prepared for the people at risk. Some 2,45,150 people can stay there. But only, 1,400 people took shelter in few centres till 10 pm on Tuesday.
About 20,000 people of different remote chars including Shefali, Majher char, Bagjhora, Char megha, Shinnir char of Mehendiganj upazila did not go to shelter centres, the administration said.
Officials of the upazila administration and local representatives said, local administrative people and volunteers of Cyclone Preparedness Programme (CPP) are doing huge publicity campaign to send people to shelter centres. But people do not agree to go.
The lowland of the chars goes under water if the water level rises up four to five feet high than normal tide. So people of the areas could be in danger.
Mehendiganj Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) Pijush Chandra Dey said, local people did not want to go to the shelter centre leaving their homestead till 10 pm, as situation was normal. But rain started after 10 pm. Then people started to go to shelter centre.
We sent several trawlers to take people from chars. We will continue our activities until we can take them to safe shelter, he added.
The UNO also said, "We arranged dry food and khichuri in the shelter centres. We also arranged hand wash facility, so that people can wash their hands with soap due to the coronavirus outbreak. We are also monitoring whether social distancing is maintaining there or not."
District civil surgeon Dr Monwar Hossain said, doctors of all the upazila health complexes were asked to stay prepared. Medical teams have been formed up in every upazilas. Medical equipment and ambulance were also prepared.
Deputy Commissioner of Barishal SM Ojior Rahman said, "We made all kind of preparations to face the cyclone Amphan. The officials and staffs of all the upazilas and Union Parishads were asked not to leave their workstations."