12 train passengers test Covid-19 positive as mass transmission threat looms
The passengers were marked with mandatory quarantine but were found travelling on Rajdhani Express between Bengaluru and Delhi today. They were immediately deboarded & the entire coach was sanitised, the release said.Updated: Mar 21, 2020 21:57 IST
Twelve people who travelled on the Indian Railways network have tested positive for coronavirus, authorities said on Saturday.
Four of these passengers were travelling on Godan Express, Train no- 11055, from Mumbai to Jabalpur on 16th March in B1 Coach and eight were travelling on AP Sampark Kranti Express from Delhi to Ramagundam on 13th March. They all tested positive on Friday, said ministry officials.
The development comes at a time when efforts are being made to prevent mass transmission of the deadly contagion through community transmissions and amid reports of suspected cases under quarantine escaping and mixing with the non-infected population, risking their own lives and that of others.
The latest such case of two people who were deboarded from Bengaluru Rajdhani Express on Saturday was also reported by the railways.
The Delhi bound passengers, who had returned from Dubai last week, were marked with mandatory quarantine but were found travelling on Rajdhani Express between Bengaluru and Delhi today. They were immediately deboarded at Kazipet and the entire coach was sanitised, the release said.
In another worrying incident earlier this week, six passengers carrying ‘home quarantine stamp were de-boarded from Saurashta Express at Borivali railway station in Maharashtra. They had been quarantined after their arrival from Singapore but were instead found travelling to Vadodara in Gujarat.
Earlier, on Wednesday the Western Railway authorities had de-boarded four Germany-returned passengers with ‘home quarantine’ stamp from the Bandra Terminus-Delhi Garib Rath Express train at Palghar railway station after co-passengers alerted the authorities.
The government had clarified yesterday that it meant to deal strictly with such violations that threatened to expose the non-infected population to the contagious covid 19 disease. The health ministry officials said states were empowered as per the existing laws to take necessary action.
On the same day when government reiterated the need to maintain social distancing and following measures to prevent community transmissions, two people who had been put on home quarantine after arrival from the middle east were arrested in north Kerala’s Wayanad for jumping quarantine.
Worried, the state government has warned of action, including 6-month jail term. Neighbouring Karnataka is also contemplating strict action against quarantine defaulters.
Incidents of people jumping quarantine have been reported from as far as Assam, where a 24-year-old was nabbed after having fled from a quarantine facility in Kerala along with two others from Odisha and West Bengal.
Yesterday several VIPs including MPs Dushyant Singh, Derek O Brien, Anupriya Patel had to force themselves into quarantine after they became part of a contact chain with infected bollywood singer Kanika Kapoor, who was booked by the Uttar Pradesh administration for negligece causing the spread of a malignant disease.
In Punjab, a gymnasium owner was arrested for keeping his facility open along with four others, in another incident the owner of a marriage hall was booked along with his son were defying government imposed restrictions on the size of mass gatherings.
A case under section 188 for disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant is being applies against such violators among other CrPC provisions.
A day earlier in Madhya Pradesh, a trader was held for allegedly giving false information leading to rumours and panic in the area over coronavirus.