Officials in MP town lock families inside houses, say not cooperating during Covid-19 lockdown
Khajuraho and Rajnagar are under curfew restrictions since March 25 after it was found that a Covid-19 positive tourist had visited the places earlier.Updated: Apr 10, 2020 07:38 IST
In perhaps first of its kind measure in the country, as many as 47 persons were locked inside their houses with their families by district administration in a bid to prevent them from moving out during home quarantine period of 14 days to check the spread of coronavirus disease Covid-19, as per administrative authorities.
The steps were taken at Khajuraho and Rajnagar, two towns in Chhatarpur district, 344 kilometres north east of capital Bhopal, on Thursday evening.
Both the towns are under curfew restrictions since March 25 after it was found that a Covid-19 positive tourist had visited the places earlier.
Sub-divisional magistrate (SDM) of the area, Swamnil Wankhede, took the decision in view of as he said the families not cooperating with the administration in observing home isolation norm.
He said, “The step was taken for only those persons who went out of the district after March 30 and returned to the place after getting themselves treated in hospitals in Gwalior, Bhopal, Kanpur, Allahabad, Delhi and other places. We had not put any lock earlier but we observed that in the past two days many of them violated home quarantine norms and moved out. Since, they came from such areas which are in a danger zone as far as Covid-19 is concerned and they were not willing to follow the home quarantine norm strictly such a step was taken by the administration.”
“Members of these people’s families had to be quarantined too as they are in touch with them,” Wankhede added.
The official said that the administration has taken care of their needs while taking the stringent measure. “We have given them phone numbers for home delivery of essential items. We have also provided ‘emergency phone numbers’ to them in case they need it. The Patwari concerned and employees of nagar parishad would visit these houses in the morning and evening every day invariably.”
He said such a step would be taken for others also who come from outside and are not willing to cooperate with the administration in observing home isolation. However, outsiders were not being allowed to enter the area.
Chhatarpur’s Congress MLA Alok Chaturvedi said, “The decision of the administration is autocratic and inhuman. The administration has unleashed a reign of terror instead of creating awareness among people. The public representatives were not taken into confidence before taking such a harsh measure.”
However, district collector of Chhatarpur Sheelendra Singh said, “The step taken is just to ensure they follow the home quarantine norm strictly to ensure their own safety and that of others in society too. The decision was taken only when it was observed that they left their houses during night hours. If they are willing to cooperate with the administration and stay in their houses during the period we will remove the locks.”