Friday, 14 August, 2020
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EDITORIAL

Appreciable Measures



Ever since the detection of the first case of coronavirus in the country, the government has girded up its loins to prevent the spread of virus and protect lives. Indisputably, the task of taking on the dreaded pandemic is quite an arduous one, given the country's scarce resources, health infrastructure and technical expertise. Despite all these shortcomings, the government has done wonders in tackling the pandemic by mobilising its available resources and expertise which is why the impact of the pandemic in the country is much less than in many nations as well as our two neighbours. The existing number of the infection and death cases is a conspicuous indication that the country has so far performed a remarkable feat in preventing and controlling the spread of virus infection.

In his reply to the queries of lawmakers at the House of Representatives, the other day, on the allocation of fiscal budget of 2020/2021, Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli echoed the above views when he justified the initiatives taken by the government for coronavirus prevention, control, and treatment of the infected people as decent ones. The PM was very precise when he stated that the pandemic did not break out owing to the weakness of the government and as nothing much than what has happened could have been done in this unpredictable time. However, the COVID-19 has badly impacted the government policy and programmes aimed at buttressing the country's unwavering fight against the contagion. Though the country's economy was badly hit due to the prolonged lockdown, the government gave priority to the people's health and life, he said and praised each layer of the government for their preparations to battle the pandemic and saving lives.

However, a few incidents appeared to have played spoilsports to the government's all-out attempt to battle the virus. A large number of migrant Nepalis, who arrived from India with some carrying virus infection, have unleashed an unforeseeable pressure on the government that needed to increase and manage the number of quarantine and isolation centres instantly, which without doubt proved to be an uphill task. Also, not all available PCR machines have been functioning well while manpower and technicians are not ready at hands to operate them. The country is currently conducting 500 PCR tests per day. But the matter for the government was made worse because about seven thousands to eight thousands people have been entering the nation every day, which requires several additional tests instantly, but which unfortunately is out of government's prowess now.

If we peruse the PM's statement, we would apparently be able to understand the existing ground reality and appreciate the government's efforts. Definitely, without the government's honest and decent endeavors, the number of infection cases could not have been kept under 5,000 and deaths merely at 15 (as of Thursday). This says volumes about how the government is sweating it out to stop the virus spiraling out of control. The government indisputably deserves appreciation instead of vile criticism that many opposition lawmakers have heaped on it. Some sporadic incidents cannot and must not outshine the brighter aspects of the government's endeavours of preventing the virus spread and protecting the lives. 

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