We're Live Bangla Monday, March 27, 2023

Bhutan ends lockdown, to reopen education institutions next week


The government of Bhutan announced that the schooling for students of classes X and XII will resume from Monday.

For students in IX and XI grades, the campus will be opened from Sept. 21, Prime Minister Lotay Tshering announced, while students in high-risk areas will be shifted to western districts to complete their session.

The prime minister said technical and vocational training institutes including private owned ones such as driving and tailoring course providers can also resume, along with the colleges and institutions across the country.

The schooling for X and XII grade students were closed for the second time along with the nationwide lockdown that was enforced on Aug. 11.

All the schools and colleges across the country were closed on March 18 after the detection of the first COVID-19 positive case in Bhutan. On July 1 the government had opened schooling for students of classes X and XII.

During the long-gap between school closure and reopening, students of all grades were provided online lessons.

Starting Saturday, travel between districts will also be allowed, while public transports and private transportations will have to maintain 50 percent capacity.

Around 8,000 individuals have registered for inter-district travel, said the country's health minister in her live address to the public Friday evening. She urged everyone to wear a mask and maintain social distancing for safety measures as the country ends phase three of the lockdown Friday.

She said every two individuals from a household in Samdrup Jongkhar district, which shares its border with India will be tested for COVID-19. A woman with no recent travel history has been detected positive last week.

Traveling to and from high-risk areas of Phuentsholing, Gelephu, Samdrup Jongkhar and Samtse districts were restricted and people coming from these places will have to undergo quarantine protocol, said the prime minister.

Four positive COVID-19 cases have been detected in the country within the last 24 hours. Two were working at the mini dry port at Phuentsholing town while two are Royal Bhutan army personnel.