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‘Covid-19 infected KMC member mingled with people’

By EMN Updated: Jul 20, 2020 4:33 pm

Complacent, careless individuals, socialisation a big challenge

Our Correspondent
Kohima, July 20 (EMN): In what may be termed sheer recklessness, a municipal staff worker who was infected with Covid-19 on July 19 had openly violated protocols by coming in close contact with two other persons while waiting for his test results.

The staff member of Kohima Municipal Council (KMC) was among four persons who tested positive for the virus on Sunday.

Sources informed Eastern Mirror that the infected staff member along with another KMC colleague and a companion, from D. Khel and Kitsubozou respectively, had gone to Sechü-Zubza for work on July 18, and had even put up together at an accommodation for the night.

The two persons were in dilemma the following day after learning about the news of their colleague having contracted Covid-19. They seemed to have no clue that their friend had undergone tests, sources informed.

Subsequent to the confirmation report of a positive case among them, the duo went into self-isolation at a garden in the outskirts of the town while waiting to get tested. They decided not to go home.

Updates from the source on July 20 informed that the two persons have been directed to institutional quarantine centres after their samples are tested.

Officials socialising with residents

Meanwhile, prior to the Covid-19 case, it was learned that some officials and staff members of the KMC residing in Upper D. Block and Kitsubozou adjacent to the containment zone, were seeing breaking safety protocols by socialising with other residents in their jurisdictions, while also undergoing tests. This has caused much uncertainty among residents.

An official from the office of the Kohima Smart City Development Limited (KSCDL) and a staff member from the KMC office, which function in the same building, were admitted to Naga Hospital Authority Kohima (NHAK), a Covid-19 hospital, a few days ago.

Subsequently, multiple tests from among officials and sanitation workers were conducted, after which the building of the KMC and Smart city resumed work on July 14.

However, some officials and staff members from the two offices are still in confinement at home following detection of positive cases from the building initially.

Sources informed this newspaper that some KMC staff members and other frontline workers have not been conducting themselves well outside their homes in the aforementioned localities —associating with one another without taking precautions, even without wearing masks too.

Unexpected Covid-19 cases alarm Kohima residents

An entry leading to Upper D. Block colony seen here sealed by the authority on July 19, in Kohima.

The authorities insist on keeping confidential the identities of Covid-19 patients, people in the high risk category, and primary or secondary contacts, in order to prevent social stigmatization and discrimination. But many citizens are alarmed when Covid-19 cases are detected around their residences for they do not know who might be at risk.

“I did not know that my neighbour was undergoing test and just yesterday, we got information that she was detected with Covid-19 positive case,” said a panic-stricken citizen whose residence is in a containment zone, on July 19 at a location in Kohima.

Similar cases from various quarters are being heard about from across the many containment zones in Kohima where residents are unaware about persons undergoing tests for Covid-19.

There are approximately five municipal wards and one village demarcated as a containment zone in Kohima.

Tobacco and spitting a threat to cleaners

The government continues to remind people about the strict restrictions that have been imposed on the sale of tobacco, and against spitting in public places; they are a serious offence.

However, it seemed that the authorities haven’t come up yet with any measure cautioning employees from consuming such substances and spitting in offices.

During assembly sessions, members of the Nagaland Legislative Assembly have also been observed exchanging packets of tobacco. Likewise, many high ranking government officials chew tobacco even when giving speeches during events at schools and colleges.

According to health experts, the Novel Coronavirus can be transmitted through saliva too.

Dustbins that are filled up with trash and spit from tobacco chewers and smokers in public places such as offices and other work places are posing a threat to sanitation workers.

A regular cleaner at an office in Kohima informed this newspaper that they regularly sanitise the dustbins containing tobacco spit spat by employees.

Gatherings at shops in various localities

Many citizens in Kohima continue to turn a deaf ear to precautionary measures by associating together in groups.

There are cases of youths gathering in big numbers at shops located in different colonies during unrestricted hours for commercial establishments within the Kohima municipal jurisdiction.

Also, many instances of people, without masks, gathering at shops while those without masks making fun of those wearing them, have been witnessed.

By EMN Updated: Jul 20, 2020 4:33:48 pm