Locals of Bhaktapur province of Nepal have started protesting against government’s decision to quarantine the evacuees from Coronavirus-hit Wuhan near human settlements. The local residents of Bhaktapur are of the opinion that the proposed isolation centre, where the evacuees will be kept under quarantine, is extremely close to the human settlements and fear that they would also get infected from the deadly virus due to the close proximity.
Bimala Tamang, one of the protesters told ANI that the government should lodge the evacuees in vacant hospitals or reserve hotels if that’s not possible. “We won't accept it. If they only care for about 180 citizens then they should get rid of us," said Tamang. At least 1,113 people have died to the epidemic and more than 44,000 cases have been detected globally.
Though the government has not declared the evacuation date, the process of evacuation has already started and 180 Nepalis living in the Hubei province of China have submitted the application for it. Apart from the locals, the elected representatives from Bhaktapur district have raised their voice against the proposed plan at a parliamentary meeting.
“Such kind of quarantines should not be kept in the middle of a densely populated area. It should be kept far away from residential areas as per the standards of WHO. I would like to attract the attention of the government over the issue," said Prem Suwal, an elected representative from Bhaktapur during the session.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) chief has called coronavirus outbreak ‘a very grave threat’ for the rest of the world even if 99 per cent of the cases remain restricted to mainland China. WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus had said that transmission among people with no travel history to China could be the 'tip of the iceberg'. A leading public health epidemiologist from Hong Kong reportedly warned that around two-thirds of the world’s population could get infected by the new Coronavirus in case it can not be controlled.
(With ANI inputs)