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Tripura village erects ‘lockdown barricade’ to make people wash hands before entering

By PTI Updated: Mar 27, 2020 8:37 pm
A man walks near a barricaded road leading to village Boiragi Para, during the nationwide complete lockdown to fight the coronavirus pandemic, on the outskirts of Agartala in Tripura on Friday. (PTI)

Agartala, March 27 (PTI): At the entrance of their tiny village in Tripura, people have put up a barricade and pasted a notice on it declaring that no one will be allowed to enter without washing his or her hands with soap and water.

They also kept water in a big bucket, a mug and a bar of soap in front of the barricade which would be lifted only after the person seeking to enter the village thoroughly cleans his or her hands. The rule applies to outsiders as well as villagers.

“We have named it Lockdown Barricade,” said Samir Kalai, an elderly villager of Bairagi Para, showing the bamboo barricade to reporters. “This is the way we are trying to contain the novel coronavirus outbreak.”

Bairagi Para in Mohanpur sub-division of West Tripura district is about 60 kilometres from Agartala. It is inhabited by around 1,000 tribal people.

“We are aware of the danger of coronavirus. So, a few days back we convened a meeting of the elders of the village and decided that we must erect a barricade at the entry point.

We also decided to keep a bucket of water, a mug and soap for washing hands. Without washing hands, nobody is allowed to enter,” Kalai said.

These days, people also need permission from elders to go out of the village, he said.

Tripura has declared lockdown on March 23, a day before Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the measure in the entire country for three weeks.

“We also generally do not allow outsiders. They need to obtain permission from village heads to enter Bairagi Para,” Kalai said.

The initiative was appreciated by District Magistrate Sandeep Namdeo Mahatme.

“The level of awareness is generally high in Tripura.

People here know why they need to maintain social distancing and wash their hands. This initiative is appreciable,” he said.

Tripura nodal officer for Covid-19, Dr Deep Debbarma, said over 948 persons with recent travel history or preliminary symptoms of the disease are under home quarantine, but no one was tested positive as yet.

By PTI Updated: Mar 27, 2020 8:37:27 pm