Home ministry instructs all local units in Valley to seal off all entry points to stop COVID-19 spread

Published On: May 21, 2020 02:37 PM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, May 21: Amid the rapid rise in COVID-19 cases in the Kathmandu Valley, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA) has instructed all the local units inside the Valley to seal off all entry points to further restrict the people's movement.

Spokesperson for MoHA, Kedar Nath Sharma, told Republica Online that the ministry dispatched a circular to this effect on Wednesday to all the local units asking them to further tighten people's movement keeping in mind the rising COVID-19 infections inside the Valley. According to him, the number of people violating the lockdown orders in the Valley has grown sharply in recent days.

"We have asked the local units in the Valley to seal off all entry points thereby restricting the people's movement here," the spokesperson said.

The home ministry has concluded that there is a huge risk of rapid COVID-19 transmission in the Valley given the densely populated areas in three districts - Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur.

"We have decided to restrict people's movement into the Valley except for emergency purposes. Those who want to come to the Valley from outside for emergency purposes must produce the Rapid Diagnostic Test (RDT) report in advance at their own expenses to the authorities concerned," he said.

In recent days, the government authorities and police administration have started sealing off the areas at the earliest after the detection of COVID-19 cases so that the coronavirus transmission can be controlled.

The police administration has been asked to take stricter measures against those who try to sneak into the Valley without taking travel passes.

The local units across the country have been asked to stop the people (except those who travel for emergency purposes) at the first entry point before they can go to other places including Kathmandu.

The MoHA, last week, revoked all existing travel passes for the people in view of the rising COVID-19 cases.

In its circular, the MoHA asked the local units to coordinate with the local administration to utilize local hotels, party venues, community buildings and other available spaces as quarantine facilities. However, the people who want to stay in quarantine facilities have to bear all expenses on their own, the MoHA said.





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