MCG on the lookout for guest houses, schools, empty buildings that can be used as isolation centresUpdated: Jun 30, 2020 00:07 IST
The Municipal Corporation of Gurugram (MCG) is planning to use guest houses, government schools, colleges, paying guest accommodations (PGs), and ashrams in the city as isolation centres where patients infected with the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) can be treated, said officials on Monday.
MCG additional commissioner Surender Kumar held a meeting with officials from MCG, Haryana State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation (HSIIDC), and the district education department in this regard at the civic body’s Sector 34 office on Monday.
“In assistance with the education department and HSIIDC, we are preparing a list of all the guest houses, PGs, government schools, colleges, and ashrams that fall within MCG’s jurisdiction, and the list will be ready by the end of this week. We will use that information to identify buildings that have enough space to accommodate at least 25-30 Covid-19 patients,” Devinder Kumar, zonal taxation officer (ZTO) who attended the meeting, said.
Kumar further said the MCG is also in the process of identifying vacant buildings which can be converted into isolation centres. The move comes after getting a nudge from chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar two week ago.
There are around 3.5 lakh properties registered in MCG’s tax records. However, the MCG does not have any data on vacant buildings, said officials. A survey to identify empty buildings will be kicked off soon.
“We don’t have any records on vacant buildings and will have to initiate a fresh survey for it. We are aiming to complete this survey within two months as it may take us some time to trace owners of such buildings and subsequently convince them to lease their properties to us,” an MCG official privy to the development said.
On June 16, during a review meeting on coronavirus preparedness CM Khattar during a review meeting on coronavirus preparedness had directed authorities in Gurugram to identify vacant properties and convert them to isolation centres, citing that such buildings can accommodate a large number of residents if the Covid-19 cases spike significantly and there are shortages in hospital beds in the city.
According to an estimate made by Vivek Kalia, nodal officer, hospital and ventilator management, if the number of cases increases to almost a lakh in August, the city would then require at least 37,000 beds and more than 2,000 ventilators. Currently, there are 48 hospitals in the city that have Covid-19 beds.
On Monday, the total tally of Covid-19 cases in the district reached 5,260.
MCG officials said they will be focusing their efforts in zones 1, 2 and 3, where the cases are significantly higher than MCG’s zone 4. As per MCG’s June 27 records, nearly 1,450 cases of coronavirus were reported from zone 1, over 1,200 cases each from zone 2 and 3, while zone 4 had around 800 cases.
MCG’s zone 1 and 2 includes areas located on the left side of the Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway, the northern and western parts of the city. Zone 3 primarily includes areas falling on the eastern part of the city, starting from the Sirhaul toll till exit number 8 (sector 30/31 cut) on one side and till Ghata t-point on the other. Zone 4 mostly includes new sectors and areas falling along Golf Course Extension Road and Sohna Road.
In collaboration with the district administration, the MCG has already tied-up with 18 RWAs for establishing isolation centres at their respective condominiums, gated societies, and colonies so far.
In addition, MCG officials said they are also looking at identifying various community centres where Covid-19 patients who need oxygen support can be accommodated. Along with the health department, MCG is already in the process of establishing such a centre at a community centre in Sector 27 which will have more than 75 beds, officials said.