By Ram Karki in Netherlands
Amidst grave situation of coronavirus pandemic in Europe, resettled Bhutanese communities residing in various European countries are safe and healthy so far.
Purna Dahal, President of Association of Bhutanese Communities in Denmark (ABCD) informed that all resettled Bhutanese, numbering around 1,000, are safe and healthy though Denmark is already under lockdown. Already 161 people have died and 4,077 are positive due to coronavirus in Denmark.
I also contacted Aiman Samal, Khada Nanda Ghimire and Mohan Subba, President, General Secretary and Coordinator, respectively, of the Bhutanese Community in The Netherlands (BCN) to understand the current situation of Bhutanese here. They have advised that they are in contact with all community members and all resettled Bhutanese are safe and sound in The Netherlands. There are around 400 Bhutanese living in The Netherlands.
In Netherlands, 1,651 individuals have lost lives and 16,627 still fighting with the virus, according to latest figures. The country is under lockdown since 16 March.
In United Kingdom where 4,313 people have died and 41,903 are infected. Prem Giri, Chairman of Bhutanese Welfare Association (BWA) advised BNN that all the resettled Bhutanese in UK are safe and doing well. There are around 500 Bhutanese resettled in the UK.
I also contacted Bhutanese community leaders in Norway. Ramesh Gautam, Rohit Kumar Pokhrel and Ram Bahadur Baniya advised BNN that all resettled Bhutanese, numbering around 700, in Norway are safe so far. 62 Norwegian have died while 5,550 are infected.
Another European country Belgium has also been badly affected by this pandemic and is under complete lockdown since second week of March. As per Bhakta Subba, a Bhutanese community leader residing in Antwerpen, they all are safe. Belgium recorded 1,283 people dead and 18,431 infection on COVID-19.