New Delhi: India’s neighbour Bhutan has officially announced the country’s first nationwide lockdown as the number of coronavirus cases touched 113 on Tuesday. The order comes as a returning resident, a 27-year-old Bhutanese woman from Kuwait, tested positive after leaving the quarantine centre and coming in contact with several people in capital city Thimphu. Also Read - Corona Vaccine Latest News: Does Govt Have 80K Cr to Buy & Distribute Vaccine, Asks Serum Institute CEO Adar Poonawalla
It must be noted that Bhutan continues to have the lowest number of coronavirus cases among the South Asian countries and is yet to report a COVID-19 death. Also Read - This Vitamin Can Reduce Risk of Complications in COVID-19 Positive Patients
“The unprecedented lockdown is enforced to identify and isolate all positive cases, immediately breaking the chain of transmission,” the government said in a statement, as quoted by Reuters. Also Read - Jodhpur Lockdown News: Total Shutdown Imposed in The District Amid Rising Number of COVID-19 Cases | What's Allowed, What's Prohibited
“Everyone is asked to stay home to protect themselves and their families from the disease, should there be undetected, rampant transmission,” the statement read.
Schools, colleges, offices, commercial establishments and all other institutions have been shuttered. Exams have been postponed in all educational institutes and those who were in boarding facilities were asked to not leave the campus.
Bhutan had already enforced strict screening and monitoring of people at all entry points to the country which, the government stated, was the reason for the slow spread of the disease. However, Bhutan’s tourism industry – one of its most revenue-making sectors – has been paralysed due to the pandemic.
Notably, Bhutan shares borders with the Indian states of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, West Bengal and Sikkim.