6 Jan 2018 – At least two elderly women died in Thakurgaon on Saturday as northern districts bore the brunt of a cold wave crossing the country.
Three more deaths caused by the cold in Kurigram brought the total number of deaths reported to five in the last 48 hours. While the first two victims were a toddler and a newborn, the latest victims included two adults, suggesting an uptick in the weather’s severity.
The temperature in Kurigram is expected to drop to 7C again on Sunday morning, according to Accuweather.
The lowest temperature of the day, 5.8C in Chuadanga and Rajshahi districts, forced residents to endure untold suffering due to the persistent cold weather.
With children and the elderly disproportionately affected, incidence of cold-related diseases have reportedly been rapidly increasing.
In Kurigram, life has come to a standstill. People are avoiding stepping outside without any important cause and markets are almost deserted.
In the past 24 hours 98 people were admitted to the hospital with cold related problems, said residential medical officer of Kurigram sadar Hospital.
In Sirajganj, during past 48 hours more then two hundred children were admitted to Sadar and Upazila hospitals due to the cold, said Sirajganj General Hospital RMO Dr Akramuzzaman.
In Madaripur, the cold from the Himalayas has adversely affected all kinds of business establishments, including farming, grocer shops, restaurants, and retail shops.
Losses are mounting daily for vendors and grocery shop owners because people are hardly coming out of their homes in defiance of the bone-chilling temperatures.
According to the Agriculture Extension Department, Boro seedbeds have been attacked by a seasonal pest, raising the spectre of a great loss for farmers and sustained upward pressure on the price of rice, that already had gone up dramatically in 2017.
The seedbeds, where farmers have sown rice, are taking on a yellow tinge as sunlight is failing to reach them due to thick fog, according to Mokter Mollah, a Boro farmer.
Thanks to Argiris Diamantis for these links