KATHMANDU -- As South Asian countries continue to witness an increase in positive cases, the Nepali government on Wednesday announced measures including restriction of public gatherings to prevent the spread of COVID-19 infection.
The meeting of high-level coordination committee formed to combat COVID-19 under the leadership of Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Ishwar Pokhrel decided to shut down all the public spaces like cinema halls, cultural centers, stadiums, museums, nightclubs, health clubs and swimming pools and other places of recreational activities till April 30.
In addition to a ban introduced earlier on mass gatherings and halt of conferences and events, the meeting decided to restrict the movement of people in religious and public spaces as well.
"Movement of public is not allowed unless it's very important or urgent. No gathering of more than 25 people in cultural, social events or in religious and public spaces like party palace, temples, monasteries, mosques and church," said a statement issued by the committee.
Nepal has so far recorded a single COVID-19 infection of a student, who returned from central China's Wuhan in January and has already recovered. No new cases have been detected further, according to the Ministry of Health and Population.
The government has urged the transport entrepreneurs to limit the number of passengers in the public vehicles, in addition to spraying disinfectant in the vehicles before the regular operation.
It has further urged the local governments including municipalities and village councils to maintain cleanliness and spray disinfectants in public spaces, which comparatively see more flow of public.
Earlier, visa-on-arrival for the nationals of all the countries was suspended which is effective from March 14 until the end of April. The government has decided to restrict immigration from all the countries of Europe, West Asia and Gulf, Iran, turkey, Malaysia, South Korea and Japan.
"All the passengers coming from the above nations or using these transits would be restricted, to be effective from March 20 to April 15," the statement said.