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Nepal government decides to close international borders for human mobility for a week

KATHMANDU: As a part to control the spread of coronavirus outbreak in the country, the government on Sunday decided to close the international borders only for human mobility for a week from 10:00 am on Monday.
A meeting of the Council of Ministers held this evening took this decision, government spokesperson and Minister for Finance, and Information and Communications Technology Dr Yubaraj Khatiwada said.
“As this infection is spread from the mobility of large number of people and across the borders, the mobility (of people) is postponed by considering the current issue and interests of the neighbouring countries,” Dr Khatiwada said.
This decision was taken not to spread the infection in the next countries; reduce to risks; beef up the mutual cooperation and understanding, he said adding, “We have to advance multilateral and bilateral cooperation.”
The government also decided to transform the Chandragiri-based hospital of Armed Police Force, Nepal into a dedicated hospital for the treatment of coronavirus pneumonia patients in cases the COVID-19 patients were confirmed. The doctors of the Nepali Army and Nepal Police would be mobilised for the operations of the dedicated hospital if needed, Minister Khatiwada added.
Likewise, the cabinet meeting decided to establish a fund by putting Rs 500 million meant for combating the deadly coronavirus. All the ministers would provide a month’s salary in the fund, Dr Khatiwada shared. The government employees, business persons, social workers, organizations and individuals would be urged for their support in the fund.
Similarly, the government has decided to mobilize the assistance by the Ministry of Finance in coordination with the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Foreign Affairs in regard to the equipment necessary for the treatment of the coronavirus pneumonia and for the sustainable management of the health security materials.
Likewise, in order to motivate the health workers working in the front desks during this dire state would be provided with 50 per cent to cent per cent allowances, the meeting decided.
The government would also provide all the equipment necessary to safeguard the health workers at their work. Decision has been made to make a coordinated effort between the Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of Health and Population to bring any COVID-19 infected person to hospital from the international border points.
The security personnel and health workers would be assigned to bring those COVID-19 infected persons to the treatment facilities.
Furthermore, decision was made to set up quarantine centres at Federal, State and local levels in coordination among the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Home, Ministry of Defence and Ministry for Federal Affairs and General Administration. Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Civil Aviation would take the lead for the same.
Similarly, decision was taken to make the storage of essential goods systematic and ease the supplies as well as carry out market monitoring.

Published Date: Sunday, March 22nd, 2020 | 10:31 AM

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