KATHMANDU, Nepal

With 10 more deaths on Friday, the coronavirus death toll in Nepal crossed 600, while the number of total infections jumped to over 100,000, a Health Ministry spokesman said.

Over the past 24 hours, infections increased by 2,059 to reach 100,676, spokesman Jageshwor Gautam told a news briefing.

On Thursday, Nepal reported the highest single-day infections at 4,364, nearly half of them in the capital Kathmandu.

While the government was quick to impose a nationwide lockdown in March, which was lifted in mid-July, it has come under fire for lax implementation of preventive measures and lack of preparedness.

Last week, three of Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli’s advisors tested positive for COVID-19.

On Friday, all three reported recovery from the disease, but the virus’ spread into the prime minister’s inner circle raised questions about preventive measures.

During a news briefing on Wednesday, the spokesman urged infected people to visit hospitals only in case of an emergency, drawing criticism from the public and news media.

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