Coronavirus outbreaks Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli announced a complete halt on long-haul transportation services with effect from March 23 till further notice.
Coronavirus outbreaks the Nepal government has imposed a partial lockdown by completely halting long-distance transportation services, international flights and non-essential services offered by both private and public sectors starting from March 23.
Address the nation on Friday evening, Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli announced a complete halt on long-haul transportation services with effect from March 23 till further notice, while international flight operations at Tribhuvan International Airport will remain shut from March 22 to March 31, reports The Himalayan Times.
The government has also decided to halt services offered by both private and public sectors, other than essential services, across the country from March 23 to April 3.
Oli said the government would also coordinate with neighboring countries to set up health desks at major border points to ensure no traveler was affected.
He added that the government would promote work-from-home culture as far as possible in the private sector.
However, all government and private sector employees working in the essential services sector will attend their offices as usual.
The Prime Minister made it clear that stern action would be taken against those involved in black-marketing, hoarding and creating artificial shortages in the market.
Nepal has so far reported two coronavirus cases, the lowest in the South Asian region.
The government has urged all citizens to abide by the following decisions during a lockdown:
- No one is allowed to leave their houses except for urgent matters such as medical emergency, purchase of daily consumable essential items.
- All vehicular movement of private and public sectors will be halted except emergency vehicles, including those holding special permits, security personnel and medics.
- All domestic commercial flights will be grounded except the ones used by security agencies.
- Other than employees working in essential sectors such as health, security, consumable goods, drinking water, dairy, electricity, telecommunication, customs, quarantine, waste management, employees working in other sectors will only be mobilized as per the need by their respective offices.
- Other than employees working in industries including pharmaceuticals and health equipment, food items, drinking water, dairy, petroleum, provision must be made to grant leave to those working in other private sector industries and factories during the outbreak.
- Traders must ensure regular procurement of medicine and other medical items. The government will take stern action against traders involved in creating an artificial shortage, black-marketing and hoarding essential and life-saving drugs during the difficult times. The government will seize the stocked items and mobilize them in the treatment of patients during the outbreak.
- To implement this decision in line with Clause 2 and Sub-clause 2 of the Infectious Disease Act, the government will mobilize all the Chief District Officers across the country, and if need be, will also make use of the provisions mentioned in the Local Administration Act (2028 BS).
- If anyone is found violating the directives, the government will take stern actions against them under the prevailing laws.
Moreover, the government has also decided to approve the COVID-19 related Quarantine Management Standards-2076 BS proposed by the task force formed under the coordination of Minister for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation.
Under the guidance of Ministry of Health and Population, measures will now be initiated for the prevention, control and treatment of COVID-19 related cases from hospitals in the country with the coordination of Nepal Army health professionals and with support from Nepal Police, Armed Police Force, along with doctors, nurses and other health personnel from government, community-level and private sectors, as per need.
Further support will be provided by Defence, Home, Foreign Affairs and Finance Ministries.