KATHMANDU, June 10: The government has decided to relax the nationwide lockdown after 80 days, allowing shops to open and private vehicles including taxis to ply the road based on the even and odd rule.
A meeting of Council of Ministers held on Wednesday evening took the decision to change the modality of the lockdown. The decision will come into effect from Thursday.
The private vehicles will be required to follow the health protocol prepared by the COVID-19 Prevention and Control High-level Committee, said a minister after the meeting. The details in the regard will be made public on Thursday.
Private vehicles will odd number plate will be allowed on road on odd dates while vehicles with even plates will be allowed on even dates as per the Nepali calendar.
But the public vehicles will be allowed to ply the road only after a few weeks after accessing the situation.
Likewise, certain criteria will be decided for the shop to operate.
The public and private offices, shopping malls and industries will also be allowed to open gradually.
Although the government was yet to make any decision on relaxing the lockdown which is in place since March 24, the public had already started defying the lockdown orders as many private vehicles were out and shops were opened in major cities of the country for the past few days.
There were also increasing calls and pressure for easing the lockdown. Businessmen based in New Road had even started public protest demanding the government to allow them to open shops after the police forced them to close their shops.
Nepal has reported 4363 confirmed cases and 15 deaths from the virus so far.