KATHMANDU, Sept 10: Since Nepal reported the first case of COVID-19 on January 24 - a 32-year-old Nepali student who had returned from Chinese city of Wuhan - the COVID-19 case tally in the country has already crossed the 50,000 mark.
Following the confirmation of the second case two months later on March 23, the government enforced a week-long nationwide lockdown starting March 24 to curb the further spread of COVID-19, suspending all business activities and restricting operation of all but essential services. The lockdown was extended several times and lasted for 120 days.
The first death due to the COVID-19 infection was reported on May 16. A 29-year-old woman from Sindhupalchowk district was the first victim of this virus in the country.
The 120-day long nationwide lockdown was lifted on July 21 midnight. On that day, Nepal's COVID-19 case tally stood at 17,944 including 40 deaths.
By July end, Nepal reported 19,771 COVID-19 cases, including 56 deaths. The recovery rate was 72.82 percent.
The number of people dying of COVID-19 surpassed 100 on August 15. The death tally doubled in just 14 days. On August 30 alone, 14 patients succumbed to this disease. The death tally hit 300 in the next nine days. Death rate stood at 0.6 percent.
Prohibitory orders were imposed in the Kathmandu Valley, the federal capital of the country, starting August 19 in view of the rising COVID-19 cases. The prohibitory orders in the Valley were subsequently extended for two more weeks and relaxed to some extent starting September 9 midnight.
The COVID-19 case tally stood at 50,465 on September 10. As many as 35,700 patients have recovered while 317 deaths have been reported. The recovery rate stands at 68.83 percent and the death rate at 0.63 percent.
Experts have frequently questioned the effectiveness of the months-long lockdown and criticized the government for its 'inefficiency' to tackle the pandemic as the country has started witnessing more than 1,000 new cases almost every day.