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With 15 new infections, Covid-19 cases in Assam cross 200 mark

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By PTI Updated: May 21, 2020 10:32 pm
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Guwahati, May 21 (PTI): The total number of Covid-19 positive cases in Assam crossed the 200 mark on Thursday with 15 more people, most of them lodged at quarantine centres, found to be infected with coronavirus.

Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, in a tweet, gave an update of the situation state at 8 pm, saying four persons were reported Covid-19 positive from Sarusajai Quarantine Centre here. Two of them are from West Karbi Anglong district and one each from Darrang and Udalguri districts.

With this, the total number of cases in the state has risen to 203. Fifty four people have recovered while there are 142 active cases. Four persons have died while three have migrated.

Among of the other positive cases reported on Thursday, three are from Kokrajhar, two each from Sivasagar and Dhubri and one person from Dibrugarh.

Three persons from the Kokrajhar Quarantine Centre also tested positive earlier in the day and they have been admitted at the Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed Medical College and Hospital at Barpeta.

Six persons – four from Silchar Medical College and Hospital and two from Mahendra Mohan Choudhury Hospital – have recovered and were discharged from hospital on Thursday, Sarma told a press conference here.

Tracing the source of 199 cases in the state, he said 36 are connected to the Tablighi Jamaat Markaz, 112 have a travel history, 32 were from contact tracing while the history of nine persons could not be ascertained and some who were detected on Wednesday were being checked.

Kamrup (Metro) has reported the highest of 37 cases, followed by Hojai with 23, Kamrup 16, Cachar and Golaghat with 14 each while over five out of the 33 districts in the state have not reported any Covid-19 cases so far.

“We have positive patients mostly from outside the state and cases will increase for which we have to implement our quarantine policy effectively or else it will spread to community,” Sarma said.

He said that to ensure that the quarantine policy is strictly implemented “we have adopted the approach of ruthless quarantine with a human heart”.

“All coming from other states will have to undergo mandatory institutional quarantine and then after the test results, if found negative, will be allowed home quarantine,” he said.

The state government has done away with the paid quarantine system and will “bear the entire cost which will be a huge financial burden but we are going ahead with it to ensure that it does not spread to the community level”, Sarma said.

Besides the stay, the state government will spend INR 500 daily on the food of the quarantined persons and those sent for home quarantine will also be given INR 2000.

“The government will bear the entire cost but if anybody jumps quarantine, criminal cases will be filed against them and strict directives have been issued to the superintendents of police to take immediate cognisance,” Sarma said.

The community surveillance conducted in 21,499 villages of the state found only 20,000 people suffering from fever which is “indeed a very positive health indicator and out of these 4000 samples were tested but no Covid-19 case was found which is a very hopeful sign”, he said.

He said that with the resumption of air travel, there will be more challenges as “we will have to deal with people coming in by three modes – roads, rail and air – but we will ensure strict quarantine of all”.

More than 40,000 people have already entered the state by road and rail and another 12 lakhs are waiting to come.

“We are not restricting people from coming back to their state but we appeal to them to come in batches over a period of time, so that we can ensure proper quarantine facilities and prevent the spread of the disease to the community,” the Sarma added.

6092
By PTI Updated: May 21, 2020 10:32:55 pm