Govt narrows vehicles pass model during lockdown as COVID-19 cases soar

coronavirus pandemic in nepal

KATHMANDU, May 13: After the Ministry of Health and Population confirmed 83 coronavirus cases, the highest number of infections in a single day, on Tuesday taking the total to 217, the Ministry of Home Affairs has changed the vehicle pass policy effective from May 14 to curb the further spread of the virus.

To avoid the movement of people from one administrative region to another to prevent further transmission of the global disease, the ministry has suspended all the vehicle passes including e-passes previously issued to various vehicle owners, organizations and people.

Likewise, a district should issue a permit to a vehicle only after gaining approval from the Chief District Officer of the destination district. But, should a vehicle enter into the Kathmandu Valley from other districts, it should receive approval from the Home Ministry itself. The pass should include the approval number issued by the ministry.

Also, while requesting a permit, the applicant should clarify and produce proof of the purpose of the travel.

Although the government was considering easing the nationwide lockdown given the infections were mostly limited to districts in Terai, the vehicle pass policy was narrowed after two fresh cases in Bhaktapur and one new case in Kathmandu was reported yesterday. Kathmandu has reported six cases so far.

Parsa is the most affected district with 82 confirmed cases, followed by Udayapur with 32 cases, Kapalvastu with 30 cases, Banke with 25 cases and Rupendahi with 16 cases.

On Wednesday, the Health Ministry confirmed two news cases –one from Kapilvastu and one from Banke, taking Nepal’s total cases to 219.