Kanchanpur, Nepalgunj under indefinite lockdown
Dhangadi/Nepalgunj, March 22
Kanchanpur and Banke district administration offices have imposed an indefinite lockdown in the two districts in a bid to contain the spread of novel coronavirus disease, COVID–19, which has claimed at least seven lives in India and infected more than 300 people.
The decision was taken after hordes of Nepalis returned home from India through the main border points, including Jamunaha in Nepalgunj and Gaddachauki in Kanchanpur.
A meeting chaired by Kanchanpur CDO Nurhari Khatiwada today decided to lock down the district to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Kanchanpur DAO said the indefinite lockdown would come into effect from March 23 midnight.
Khatiwada said residents of the district would not be allowed to come out of their homes from midnight. “We believe that everyone will abide by the decision”, said Khatiwada, adding, “All factories and market places will remain closed.” Kanchanpur’s western Gaddachauki border point will be shut indefinitely on Tuesday morning. No one will be let in.
With risk from COVID-19 escalating by the day, Banke District Administration Office also decided to lock down Nepalgunj today.
With the lockdown, all the shops, businesses and activities have come to a halt. Work is under way to set up 40 beds at Lions Dental Hospital and isolation wards at Khajura Cancer Hospital, said Nepalgunj Sub-metropolis Deputy Mayor Uma Thapa Magar. She said the sub-metropolis had appealed to people to stay in self-isolation.
Banke CDO Kumar Bahadur Khadka said even the Jamunaha entry point on the border with India was also shut for a week after a meeting between Nepali and Indian security heads.
Though vehicles had been halted from plying along the border since Friday, the border closure will stop people’s movement as well. Transport of essentials and ambulances, however, will be allowed as per the need, said CDO Khadka.
All border entry points that link Banke’s Narainapur Rural Municipality to India have also been sealed indefinitely. No one will be let in, said Armed Police Force Gangapur Post in-charge.
Health workers have been mobilised at Narainapur Rural Municipality’s Suiya, Baniyagaun, Roshnapurwa, Ghoddaraiya, Kakardari and Rampur, according to Bhagawanpur Area Police Office in-charge Man Bahadur BC.