KATHMANDU, March 29: As the country entered the sixth day of nationwide lockdown in an attempt to curb the spread of coronavirus pandemic, people in Bhaktapur were found flocking to streets and shops defying lockdown orders announced by the government.
When our photojournalist Dipesh Shrestha reached Taumadhi and Sukul Dhoka areas this morning, a large number of people were found to have been buying daily essentials including vegetables in local shops or gossiping about the novel virus itself. Although the shopkeepers tried to maintain physical distance with their customers by marking the spot to stand the buyers were found reluctant to follow this safety measure.
Bhaktapur Municipality has allocated five hours a day for the people to come out of their houses to buy daily essentials. “Because of this, we find it hard to control and manage the crowd,” an on-duty policeman said.
Some of the locals complain that the municipality itself has violated the government’s lockdown orders to some extent by allowing the people coming out from their homes for long hours at a time when physical distancing and isolating is required to prevent the spread of COVID-19.