SRINAGAR/NEW DELHI: India blocked roads in occupied Kashmir (IOK) on Thursday after the area reported its first case of coronavirus, together with imposing restrictions in a number of different elements of the nation on public gatherings in makes an attempt to forestall its unfold.
Densely-populated South Asia has been sluggish to be hit by coronavirus in comparison with elsewhere on this planet. However new instances in India, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka are all accelerating, with the overall throughout the area topping 500. 5 individuals have died of the illness within the area.
Authorities fear that these international locations may very well be particularly in danger ought to the virus start to unfold regionally, as a result of poor well being amenities and infrastructure.
In Indian occupied Kashmir, dozens of individuals informed Reuters they’d been prevented from leaving their neighborhoods on Thursday as a result of roads have been blocked by police and paramilitary items.
Srinagar’s senior superintendent of police Haseeb Mughal informed Reuters that highway blockades throughout the valley had been imposed to forestall the unfold of the virus.
“I had to go to take my mother to hospital in Srinagar but the police has closed the road,” stated Mohammed Ayub, from the close by city of Budgam.
“I am waiting here for the last two hours. I can’t even go home now as the road is blocked due to a traffic jam.”
The Muslim-majority area, has been comparatively unaffected by the virus, reporting its first case on Wednesday night. However the picturesque valley of seven million is one among most militarised locations on earth due a decades-long occupation by Indian forces, and its residents have been topic to extended curbs on freedom of motion.
An web shutdown that started in August following sweeping constitutional modifications in Kashmir has solely simply been eased.
A number of different areas in India have launched curbs on public meeting as coronavirus instances within the nation rose to 166.
Late on Wednesday, the desert state of Rajasthan invoked colonial-era legal guidelines that stop the illegal meeting of four or extra individuals – powers extra typically used to quell riots.
Comparable restrictions have been additionally launched in Noida, a satellite tv for pc metropolis of New Delhi.
India’s monetary hub of Mumbai expanded its partial shutdown of places of work to authorities buildings on Thursday, with at the least half the employees ordered to work at home.
The unfold of the virus continued to hit markets throughout the area. The Indian rupee fell to a near-record low towards the greenback, with Pakistan shares hitting their lowest stage in 5 years.
Since rising late final yr within the Chinese language metropolis of Wuhan, the flu-like coronavirus has contaminated over 218,000 individuals and killed practically 9,000.