Dhaka, March 26 -- The nation had prepared for massive celebrations for the day as it has come just after the birth centenary of independence hero Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, but the COVID-19 outbreak had already forced gatherings restricted even before the Mujib Barsha started.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, in a televised address to the nation on the eve of the day, said it is going to be observed in different circumstances this year considering the public health risk due to the coronavirus.

She urged all to refrain from organising programmes with gatherings to prevent the contagion from spreading further, saying the government's top priority is to save the people.

Such curbs on programmes to celebrate the day in independent Ba...