The government has launched an online platform for selling and buying of sacrificial animals ahead of Eid-ul-Azha in a bid to avoid public gatherings and stem the spread of the coronavirus.
Local Government, Rural Development and Cooperatives Minister Tajul Islam inaugurated the virtual marketplace Digital Haat (www.digitalhaat.net) on Sunday.
“We conceived the idea of creating a digital platform for safer purchase and selling of sacrificial animals to curb the Covid-19 resurgence in the country in 2020,” he said during the launch.
The Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC), ICT Division, E-Commerce Association of Bangladesh (e-CAB) and Bangladesh Dairy Farm Association will jointly operate the online platform.
“A target to sell 100,000 cattle has been set. A total of 60 marketplaces, such as Daraz, Evaly and 2,000 farmers, will be connected through this platform,” said DNCC Mayor Md Atiqul Islam.
Fisheries and Livestock Minister SM Rezaul Karim said at the event that the authorities had taken strict measures to stop cattle smuggling.
“According to our figures, there are 11.9 million cattle for sale ahead of Eid. We expect 10 million cattle to be sold,” he added.
State Minister for ICT Zunaid Ahmed Palak said: “We have given directives to the all-districts administrations to launch a digital haat connecting with the all upazilas.
“Such an initiative will help to reduce crowding in the physical cattle market,” he added.
Among others, Post and Telecommunication Minister Mustafa Jabbar, Information and Broadcasting Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud, Senior Secretary of ICT division N M Zeaul Alam, Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBBCI) President Jasim Uddin, DNCC Chief Executive Officer MD Selim Reza, Daraz Managing Director Syed Mostahidal Hoq and Shah Imran Hossain, President of Bangladesh Dairy Farmers Association were also present at the program.
Shomi Kaiser, president of e-Cab, moderated the opening ceremony.