Nepal government announces partial lockdown

20 March 2020, Kathmandu

The Government of Nepal on Friday announced a two-week partial ‘lockdown’ banning gatherings and movement of people in public areas, albeit with some exceptions.

The measures taken to prevent the spread of novel coronavirus enters into force on Sunday.

Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli in a televised address to the nation on Friday urged Nepali people to stay at home except for essential activities beginning Sunday.

The Prime Minister said the entry of all foreigners will be prohibited. “All international flights will be suspended from March 22 to March 31,” he shared.

Nepalis will also be banned from traveling abroad. The government will now shut all airports and enforce compulsory health screening at border points.

All long-route public transportation vehicles will be suspended from March 22 until further notice.

“I urge one and all to not panic and take precautionary measures to ward off COVID-19,” PM Oli said adding, “The government will leave no stone unturned to prevent, control and treat suspected cases.”

“My top priority is people’s health and I want to assure you that the government has taken all necessary measures to prevent COVID-19 spread,” PM Oli said. He, however, said that it was, however, not easy to tackle the pandemic.

Nepal has already shut-down movie theaters, cultural centers, including others to minimize the possible risk of the coronavirus which has spread across the world.

Nepal to contribute Rs 100 million to SAARC fund

In the address, the prime minister said that Nepal will be contributing Rs 100 million to SAARC fund to fight COVID-19.

During a video conference among SAARC leaders, PM Oli had agreed to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s proposal of setting up a COVID-19 Emergency Fund to combat the deadly virus in the region.

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