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Nepali lawmakers tested for COVID-19 ahead of budget session

Nepali lawmakers

Kathmandu, May 8 (UiTV/IANS) - The Nepal Parliament has collected swab samples of lawmakers and its employees as a precautionary measure against COVID-19 ahead of a budget session scheduled to begin on Friday.

"Swabs of 441 lawmakers and staff including security personnel were taken on Thursday," Pushpa Raj Rijal, a senior doctor assigned at Parliament told Xinhua news agency.

"Among them, 179 lawmakers belonged to the House of Representatives, 37 are the lawmakers of the National Assembly and the rest are parliamentary staff including security personnel."

Federal Parliament comprises both the House of Representatives and the National Assembly, the lower and upper houses respectively.

The number of COVID-19 cases in Nepal has increased to 101 after two new cases were confirmed on Thursday in south western Kapilvastu district, a senior official of th Ministry of Health and Population said.

Lately, Nepal has been witnessing a surge in the novel Coronavirus cases, with community transmission of virus expanding.

On Wednesday, the Himalayan country also witnessed first three cases of re-infection with the virus.

Nepal has been under a nationwide lockdown since March 24 to prevent the spread of the virus, including suspending land and air travels, closing borders for cross border movement of people, shutting down businesses and industries, except related to essential goods and services.

On Wednesday, the government extended the lockdown till May 18.

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