News Digest – National Security & Climate Change (July 29 – August 4, 2021)

Citizens gathered at the premises of the Health Office, Panchthar to get vaccinated against COVID-19. Photo: RSS

As of August 3, Nepal’s Covid-19 tally stands at 765,815 and the death tally has reached 9,922. There are 32,059 active cases of infection in the country while 660,116 people have made a recovery. The country recorded 3,383 new cases and 24 deaths on August 3.

Nepal police arrested two Indian citizens for the possession of an illegally acquired firearm in Dang district on August 2. They were caught while entering the district with a pistol, two magazines, and two bullets. The police have discovered that the two suspects have long been involved in illegal trading of firearms but the person who was to purchase the gun is yet to be found. According to reports, a total of 944 firearms have been confiscated from various parts of Nepal over the past 3 years.

As highly contagious mutated variants of the covid-19 virus continues to spread rapidly throughout the country, agencies responsible to come up with mechanisms to contain the virus such as Health Ministry, Covid-19 Crisis Management Centre are embroiled in a blame game. Lack of coordination among these agencies has become even more apparent as they continue to point fingers at each other for the not having a plan and for not taking suggestions from the other. This could spell disaster and lead to the colossal loss of life like during the first and second waves of the pandemic.

Public health experts are suggesting that another lockdown is unavoidable as Nepal continues to see a steady rise in the number of hospitalizations and slow rate of recovery. According to reports, cases have surged due to the lack of enforcing the restrictions currently in place and public complacency. Furthermore, this has raised the risk of outbreaks in the face of highly contagious mutated variants making the rounds. Another lockdown seems to be around the corner.

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