KATHMANDU, April 14: The government is preparing to extend the ongoing lockdown by at least one week after cases of coronavirus continued to increase in recent days.
A meeting of COVID-19 Crisis Management Committee formed to coordinate the government efforts against the pandemic is scheduled to take place on Tuesday. Based on the recommendation of the high-level committee the government is expected to extend the lockdown by one week, said informed sources.
Ongoing lockdown expires at midnight on Wednesday. All government services other than essential have been shut down, domestic and international flights have been suspended and human movement has been restricted.
The country is in a lockdown since March 24. In neighboring India, which shares a porous border with Nepal, a 21-day lockdown is expiring Tuesday. India is also expected to continue the lockdown as the COVID-19 cases have been increasing there in recent days.
Even as some government officials in Nepal had been mulling over easing the lockdown or continuing it only in highly risky provinces, the nationwide lockdown is to be continued after experts advised the government to exercise utmost caution against the pandemic.
In an effort to stem the spread of the virus, the government has already stopped human movement from one village to another village.
Thousands of India returnee migrant workers have been taken to quarantine centers. Authorities have not yet completed the contact tracing of coronavirus-infected persons and not completed testing of suspected people.