122 CRPF troopers of Delhi battalion test Covid-19 +ve, over 100 results awaited
Covid-19 update: The huge numbers in a single battalion (of over 1,000 troopers) has rung alarm bells in the establishment after it was found that “dichotomous” orders were issued to check the spread of Covid-19.Updated: May 02, 2020, 13:23 IST
More than 100 troopers in a Delhi-based battalion of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) have tested positive for the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) so far, news agency PTI reported on Saturday citing an official.
These 122 personnel belong to the 31st battalion of the country’s largest paramilitary, which has more than 1000 troopers, and are based in Mayur Vihar Phase-III area of the national capital.
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Twelve troopers had tested positive on Friday and a 55-year-old sub-inspector of the unit had succumbed to the disease early this week.
“A total of 122 troopers of this battalion have tested positive for the virus. Results for over 100 more are awaited,” a senior official said, according to PTI.
The official cited above by the news agency said that most of these infected troopers are asymptomatic.
The personnel have been admitted to an isolation facility of the Delhi government at Mandoli even as Mayur Vihar Phase-III has been entirely sealed after the huge numbers of the Covid-19 infection was reported over the last few days.
These number of infections in a single battalion in the force has come amid reports of “dichotomous” orders issued to check the spread of Covid-19.
A mandatory quarantine of 14 days for personnel joining back the unit from leave or having suspected exposure to a coronavirus-infected person had been ordered.
CRPF officers, according to PTI, said it recently came to light that the medical wing of the paramilitary force had issued a separate order in April. The order had said that doctors and paramedical staff can be taken off the quarantine if they do not show any symptom after five days.
Officials have indicated that the primary source of the Covid-19 infection in this unit could be a constable, a nursing assistant, who joined this battalion after finishing his leave period at his home in the national capital region (NCR).
This trooper is posted in another CRPF battalion deployed in Kupwara of Jammu-Kashmir and it is not clear as to how he contracted the infection. His family members had also tested negative for the respiratory disease.
Officials, according to PTI, have said that it could be possible that some other asymptomatic personnel from the 31st battalion was the primary source of infection for the unit.
The force is investigating all angles apart from an instance where it was claimed that the nursing attendant was not kept under strict quarantine in the battalion camp leading to the spread of the infection.
In April, CRPF’s director general AP Maheshwari had gone into self-quarantine as a precautionary measure after the force’s chief medical officer (CMO) tested positive for Covid-19.
Maheshwari didn’t directly come in contact with the CMO but another personnel who was with the doctor had met the top officer of the force.
Cases of the coronavirus disease have been reported in the Border Security Force (BSF) and Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) as well. Some of them have been cured too.
(With agency inputs)