DHANGADHI, March 26: A large number of people from the Sudurpaschim (far west) region have started returning back to their home abandoning work in India following a surge in coronavirus cases there.
The people from the region who had gone to India for work have started returning following the second wave of coronavirus outbreak in India and with the arrival of the Bishu cultural festival.
The Sudurpaschim Province Health Service Directorate, Rajapur, Dipayal, said 11 new coronavirus cases have been found among India-returnees within a period of five days.
In view of the possibility of the spread of the viral infection in the villages and towns again, the local administrations in the districts of the province have imposed regulations requiring the India-returnees to compulsorily stay in quarantine, as they have started entering the villages and towns without health screening.
Meanwhile, all local units in the province have made preparations to set up quarantine facilities after the Ministry of Home's written communication directing the local bodies to keep the quarantines in ready condition, said Durga Datta Ojha, president of the Federation of Rural Municipality Chairpersons and the Chair of Jorayal Rural Municipality.
The district administration has also urged the local units to make all preparations and adopt precautionary measures to be safe from COVID-19 risk.
The Province Police Office Dipayal said large crowds of people returning home from India can be seen at the border transit points of the Province- Gaddachauki and Trinagar of Kanchanpur district, Dharchula of Darchula district and Jhulaghat of Baitadi.
Hundreds of people of the Sudurpaschim province are entering daily from these transit points since the last few days.
Provincial Health Director Dr Gunaraj Awasthi said all preparations have been made for adopting precaution in view of the increased risk of spread of the coronavirus infection in the province with a large number of people who had gone to India for employment have started returning home.
"The number of people returning home from India has increased at the border. We have adopted all necessary precautions and have also paid attention to health examinations so as to reduce the risk," he said.
Spokesperson for the Sudurpaschim Province Police Office Dipayal, Senior Superintendent Mukesh Kumar Singh said that around 1,000 Nepali are entering Nepal via Trinagar and Gaddachauki border points every day.
According to the Province Police Office, Dipayal, at least 8,000 Nepali have entered Nepal via these two border points in the past 10 days.
Sudurpaschim Province Health Directorate, Dipayal, shared that it has sent a circular to district health offices of four districts sharing borders with India in order to carry out antigen tests of suspected persons returning from India.
The district health offices have been urged to make arrangements for the antigen test through health desks established at Gaddachauki, Trinagar, of Kanchanpur, Jhulaghat of Baitadi and Darchula, according to the Province Health Directorate, Dipayal, Rajpur.
Dirgha Bahadur Kami of Doti, who returned from India, said that the medical test of all those returning from India has not been conducted at the border checkpoints.
He opined, "Health desks have been established at the border points. But the medical test is not conducted there. They send the returnees home only after measuring temperature. No medical test related to the coronavirus is carried out at the health desks.'
Chief of Health Division of the Social Development Ministry of Sudurpaschim Province, Narendra Singh karki, said that antigen has been sent at the concerned local level for the same.
He added that antigen has been sent in order to carry out tests by the concerned local levels as it has become difficult to carry out the medical test of everyone in the bordering areas. “The medical tests of India-returnees will be carried out at the local levels concerned.”