Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Week-long prohibitory order in Kathmandu Valley from Wednesday midnight

 A meeting of security agencies and Chief District Officers (CDOs) of the three districts in Kathmandu Valley today decided to issue prohibitory orders on movement of people and vehicles from Wednesday midnight.

“The prohibitory order has been issued to discourage unwarranted movement of people to control the increasing spread of coronavirus infection in Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur,” according to a press note issued by the CDOs of the three districts of the Valley.

“Movement of all vehicles except those providing emergency and essential services will be halted,” reads the 17-point prohibitory order.

Earlier in the afternoon, a meeting of security agencies representatives and CDOs held in the District Administration Office of Kathmandu district, discussed the current modality of lockdown in Kathmandu Valley.

The government decision comes amid a record number of 1,016 new infections on Tuesday, the highest daily spike in Covid-19 cases, as the national tally reaches 28,257. The Kathmandu Valleyalone reported some 205 new cases, the highest single-day infections, while seven people died due to Covid-19-related complications in a day, today.

The government has already granted discretionary powers to CDOs to impose prohibitory orders or even a curfew in their respective districts to contain the spread of the coronavirus. The CDOs can finalise the modality of the prohibitory order on their own. 

“The chief district officers can also use the provisions of the Local Administration Act-2028,” according to the Finance Minister and government spokesperson Dr Yuba Raj Khatiwada. “The government has decided that the districts, in which a prohibitory order has been imposed, would require both government and public offices to use a minimum number of employees at offices and to make arrangements for the rest of staff to work from home,” he said, adding that the discretionary powers also allow the CDOs to take necessary measures to contain the Covid-19 situation under Clause 2 (2) of the Infectious Disease Act-1964 in coordination with the District Corona Crisis Management Centre. “

On August 14, the local administration offices had imposed restrictions on various activities and services in the Valley due to rising number of coronavirus cases. Restaurants were limited to takeaways and deliveries, while all festivities, gatherings and public functions in open spaces had been banned.

Earlier, on March 24, the government imposed lockdown – to contain the spread of coronavirus – for 4 months, though the economy bleed red. The government was forced to lift the lockdown – after 120 days – to rescue the economy but failed.

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