The headquarters of Nepal Police has directed all police units to prohibit Deusi-Bhailo programmes in their respective areas during the Tihar festival.

According to Inspector General of Police, Shailesh Thapa Kshetri, all the units have been instructed to impose ban on cultural gatherings such as Deusi-Bhailo, owing to the spike in COVID-19 cases throughout the country.

In a recent virtual meeting held with police chiefs of all seven provinces, IGP Kshetri had warned that allowing such mass programmes could worsen the pandemic.

Adhering to the instruction from the higher-up, all 77 district police offices, in coordination with concerned district administration offices, have been working to raise awareness to not conduct Deusi-Bhailo programmes amid the pandemic.

The local police units have been using loud speakers for dissemination of information regarding the ban on Deusi-Bhailo.

Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur district administrations have also issued public notices separately on prohibition on Deusi-Bhailo.

In previous years, the authorities used to appeal to Tihar revellers to conclude all cultural programmes, including Deusi-Bhailo, by 10:00pm.

Similalrly, DAOs have warned against producing, possessing, importing, exporting, selling and bursting firecrackers in the name of celebrating the festival as the smoke emanating from such items pose threat to public health besides causing injury and fire.

Police have stepped up security to ensure that illegal and dangerous fireworks are not used.