It is an unscientific decision to keep garment factories open after enforcing a lockdown. Thus, business is getting priority over public health. This strategy will not work because public health and the country's economy are inextricably tied to each other.
The garment authorities talk about maintaining health safety protocols strictly, but in reality, there is hardly anyone in the factories who conforms to those.
Many people work in apparel factories and we are putting their lives at risk.
There will arise another problem – factories in other sectors will also demand continuing their operation complying with hygiene rules.
Eventually, we will not benefit much from the lockdown. Sadly, many people will be affected, so will the country.
Our problem is that those who are politicians are businessmen too. When they make a decision, they give more importance to business than public health and their interest. We see that the government repeatedly backtracks on their stringent measures to rein in Covid-19. For instance, shops were allowed to reopen the day after the announcement of a strict lockdown. And the movement of public transport resumed too.
This means we do not take any preparation before doing anything. We lack coordination.
A country that has taken such an unscientific decision has had to pay the heavy price. We have so far suffered the consequences for imprudent decisions, maybe, we are now moving towards paying a bigger price.
We are slowly losing opportunities we have to flatten the virus curve. We missed out on the chance to contain the virus throughout March. After that, the same happened between 4-13 April. Again, we are going to miss another opportunity from 14 April.
We are just giving more importance to cash businesses even after accepting greater losses. The damage to the economy will be much bigger in the long run. We have not been able to open educational institutions for more than a year now, and it has an impact on the economy.
In fact, it is not possible to get good results in dealing with the pandemic maintaining two standards.
Prof Be-Nazir Ahmed is the former director of Communicable Disease Control at the Directorate of Health