Covid-19: Punjab CM orders village-level quarantine of returnees
Issues strict instructions for compulsory institutional quarantine of all those coming from other statesUpdated: Apr 30, 2020 23:44 IST
Amid grave concerns expressed by various deputy commissioners (DCs) over several Covid-19-infected persons coming in from outside the state in recent days, Punjab chief minister Amarinder Singh on Thursday ordered village-level quarantine in designated buildings, while issuing strict instructions for compulsory institutional quarantine of all those coming from other states.
During a video conference with DCs and police chiefs of all districts, he made it clear that no one coming from outside should be allowed to go home without completing the 21-day quarantine period. “Where possible, those found positive and negative should be segregated in different buildings altogether,” he suggested.
The CM directed the officials to work with sarpanches to identify schools and other buildings for quarantine purpose in villages. He also appealed to sarpanches and panchayats to increase village-level surveillance to check further spread of the disease.
As many as 3,525 pilgrims from Nanded (Maharashtra), and 153 students from Kota (Rajasthan) returned to Punjab in the past four days, in addition to 3,085 labourers received at the Fazilka-Rajasthan border.
Of those who had returned from Nanded, test reports had been received for 577 persons, of whom 20% were found positive. Of the 105 fresh cases reported in the state on Thursday, 98 are from outside.
Ruling out any relaxation at the state borders, which continue to remain strictly sealed, Amarinder said there was no question of allowing any buses to enter Punjab without permit/approval from the respective states which are sending vehicles to pick up their people. He directed the officers to ensure strict enforcement of the sealing at the borders.
The Ludhiana DC called for permission to industries not located in focal points and industrial estates to also open up, in designated areas as per the master plan. The CM agreed, pointing out that with 95% of the state’s industry in Ludhiana, it was important for them to start operating in order to revive the economy of Punjab.
Describing the prevailing situation as unprecedented, of the kind he had not seen even in the 1965 and 1971 wars, Amarinder warned that the problem was likely to get aggravated in the coming days, going by the global trends of the spread of the disease. India had been fortunate to keep the cases under control so far, he said.