Nepali Army soldier Nepal’s first security person to die of COVID-19


Country witnessed the first death of a security person due to COVID-19. The deceased, a 34-year-old soldier of Nepali Army was posted in Kathmandu. He hailed from Ramechhap district.

However, Nepali Army has not yet revealed the identity of the deceased. The deceased was also a patient of leukemia (blood cancer) for the past four years.

NA Spokesperson Santosh Ballav Poudel said the soldier, who was undergoing treatment for cancer died due to comorbidity. The NA soldier, who died on September 14, had tested positive for the virus on September 17.

NA Spokesperson Paudel claimed that although they didn’t know that the deceased was carrying the coronavirus they had handed over the body to family respecting all protocols that are followed in the case of death due to coronavirus.

NA has completed contact tracing of those who were in contact with the deceased soldier and quarantined them. As many as 2,056 NA personnel have been infected with the coronavirus so far. Of them, 1,654 are undergoing treatment at various hospitals, while 401 have recovered and joined duties.

NA personnel are required to provide security at various holding centers, quarantine and isolation facilities. The NA is also treating COVID-19 patients from its hospitals.

“We have reduced the number of security personnel in barracks by one third to two third, in a bid to subdue the spread of the virus,” Poudel said. He further said they have increased social distancing inside barracks, kitchen staffers have been examined regularly for the virus and regular deep cleaning is conducted inside barracks to prevent spread of the virus inside barracks.

The number of COVID infected security personnel from three security agencies, Nepal Army, Nepal Police and Armed Police Force has crossed 6,700 as of today.

Among them 3,626 security personnel of Nepal Police have contracted the virus. Of them 1,809 personnel have recovered while 1,817 are still undergoing treatment.

Of the Nepal Police personnel, who have contracted the virus, 944 are from Kathmandu valley. A total of 263 infected are from Police Headquarter in Naxal while 681 are stationed at various police stations in Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Lalitpur.

Senior Superintendent of Police Kuber Kadayat, spokesperson for Nepal Police claimed that COVID situation is still under control as the recovery rate among the personnel is higher. He urged people to abide by the social distancing norms.

As many as 1,023 personnel of the Armed Police Force have contracted the virus so far. Among them 670 have recovered while 353 are still undergoing treatment, according to Deputy Inspector General Raj Aryal, spokesperson of APF. He also said they were confident that the situation would improve in their organisation as they had intensified PCR testing and contact tracing.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on September 21, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.