KATHMANDU, Aug 6: Amid the rising number of Coronavirus (COVID-19) cases across the country, the government has decided to enforce odd and even rules for both public and private vehicles starting Thursday. The odd and even scheme, however, will not be applicable to the vehicles belonging to essential services.
Issuing a public notice on Wednesday evening, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA) announced to enforce the odd and even rule for all types of vehicles in the three districts of Kathmandu Valley and other districts that have reported more than 200 COVID-19 cases. Under the odd and even rules, vehicles with even registration numbers are allowed to ply the road on the even day and those with odd numbers on the odd day according to the Bikram Sambat calendar.
The MoHA has decided to restrict movement of people between 9 pm to 5 am in these districts in order to contain possible spread of the COVID-19. The decision comes a day after the government held consultation with political leaders representing different parties and health experts at the Prime Minister’s Official Residence in Baluwatar. They had all suggested taking some concrete measures to curb the possible spread of COVID-19 cases.
With 381 new cases reported on Wednesday, Nepal’s COVID-19 tally reached 21,390. A total of 63 people have already died of COVID-19 in the country as of Wednesday.
According to the Home Ministry, all passenger vehicles are banned from entering Kathmandu Valley between 7 pm to 7 am each day. This rule, however, will not apply to vehicles belonging to essential services.
The MoHA has also decided to effectively enforce the safety guidelines including wearing masks from Thursday. The ministry has warned of stringent action against individuals, groups or institutions involved in violating safety guidelines developed by the Ministry of Health and Population.
Among other things, the government also decided to close the international border and restrict cross-border movement of people except those who have received due permission until further notice. All kinds of gatherings including party, seminars and group celebrations in hotels and restaurants will also be banned until further notice.