Ludhiana woman cremated; sons’ bid to jump quarantine foiled

Updated on Mar 31, 2020 11:08 PM IST

Duo surrounded by police after a 1km chase, where 5-member hospital team in protective equipment finally take them back to the civil hospital; test report of 43 direct contacts, including the two men, are awaited

MC secretary Jasdev Sekhon (blue gear) spray disinfectant in the area where victim lived in Amarpura(HT Photo)
MC secretary Jasdev Sekhon (blue gear) spray disinfectant in the area where victim lived in Amarpura(HT Photo)
Hindustan Times, Ludhiana | ByMohit Khanna

Two sons of the third coronavirus casualty of the state and the first from the district, Puja Rani, 42, attempted to flee from the isolation ward of the civil hospital on Tuesday evening. With their covid-19 report still awaited, the hospital went into a tizzy. Their samples, were among 43 direct contacts, that had been sent for testing and they were the only ones from the family allowed to attend the cremation that took place in the dead of the night, at 2am, at the Gaughat crematorium.

The duo, who fled after prying open a window of the toilet, were surrounded by police near Basant Ice Cream Corner, Field Gunj, around 1km from the hospital. Finally, a five-member team from the hospital, shielded with PPE kits and other protective equipment, arrived at the spot and took them back to the hospital. The younger of the two men works as driver and elder one is a peon at Guru Nanak Bhawan in the city.

3 doctors among 58 identified contacts asked to self-isolate

Since the death, 33 contacts of Rani, who worked at a factory near Samrala Chowk, were asked to self-isolate on Monday night. On Tuesday, 25 more persons, including the medical staff deployed at civil hospital were also asked to self-isolate. Samples of three children of Rani, her brother-in- law Sukhwinder Singh, and two other relatives have been sent for covid-19 testing.

Three doctors, two staff nurses and a Class-4 employee, who came in direct contact with the patient, have also been instructed to self-isolate. The private ambulance driver, who the woman’s family had hired to take her to Patiala, has also been advised home quarantine.

Quarters cordoned off; colony sanitised

With palpable panic among residents of Amarpura Colony, a congested locality marked by dingy small quarters, police cordoned off Rani’s house in the area on Monday. In Shimalpuri too, where Sukhwinder, along with his 10 family members, have been quarantined, the house was sealed. The Amarpura quarter, where Rani had been living as tenant for a year, was sanitised.

She was sent back from civil hospital flu corner on Mar 26, 27: Brother-in-law

Sukhwinder Singh, Rani’s brother-in-law, who samples have also been taken, has claimed that she had reported to the flu-corner with symptoms of the being infected with the coronavirus on March 26, and 27 and sought treatment. “She was sent back, saying that she had no travel history,” he claimed.

Civil surgeon Dr Rajesh Bagga said he was unaware if the victim had previously visited the flu corner.

Meanwhile, Dr Gurvinder Kaur who had attended to Rani on March 29 said she was not being allowed to home quarantine, but was being asked to report on duty. Two surgeons and intern who conducted Rani’s check-up also claimed that their samples had not been taken for testing.

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