English | Dzongkha Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Regulating non-essential travel to and from Samtse

Sep 17, 2021

Samtse has not seen any COVID-19 positive cases from the community for over a month now. However, the increasing number of people and vehicles moving in and out of the district is a concern. According to the District COVID-19 Task Force, about 300 people and vehicles travel in and out of Samtse every day.

Despite being successful in containing community transmission so far, the District Task Force is worried that unnecessary movement in and out of the district could trigger another lockdown. The movement of vehicles and people increases significantly during the weekends. On one of the weekends, nearly 2,000 people entered and exited Samtse district. The movements were mostly non-essential and non-emergency.

“During one of the weekends, we conducted a COVID-19 awareness program for the people travelling between the two towns. During that time, we saw about 600 vehicles and nearly 2000 people moving in and out of Samtse. Moreover, the travelers were mostly civil servants,” said Samtse Dzongda Pasang Dorji.

Worried over the matter, the Samtse District COVID-19 Task Force recently issued a notification mandating all staff of various organizations and their families to seek approval from their heads before making any travel plans. The decision is expected to regulate and monitor needless travel.

According to officials at the Amo-Chhu checkpoint, the movement of people and vehicles between Samtse and Phuentshogling has increased with the recent announcement of lockdown relaxation in the two places. Moreover, the need for a rapid antigen test was also called off recently making travel more convenient.

Passang Dorji, Samtse

Edited by Yeshi Gyaltshen

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