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Coronavirus: Two wards of Bengaluru sealed completely to contain COVID-19 spread

iranjan Kaggere
Last Updated : 10 April 2020, 08:55 IST
Last Updated : 10 April 2020, 08:55 IST
Last Updated : 10 April 2020, 08:55 IST
Last Updated : 10 April 2020, 08:55 IST

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Scaling up efforts to contain the community spread of COVID-19 in Bengaluru and other parts of Karnataka, the government has decided to order a clampdown in COVID-19 hotspot areas and geographically seal off the regions from the rest of the state. The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has imposed a clampdown in two wards — Bapuji Nagar and Padarayanapura off Mysuru Road in the Chamarajpet limits with immediate effect. The officials have completely sealed the two wards and banned the entry into and exit of people from the wards.

Giving details of the procedure, B H Anil Kumar, Commissioner of BBMP told media personnel that both the wards would be sealed for any movement of either people or things. “There will only be one point of entry and exit. All those (police, health workers, BBMP, Civil Defense) who will interact with the ward people will be screened and documented. We will provide all essential things at the doorstep. For 14 days, no one shall come out from the areas,” the Commissioner said. Sources in the BBMP revealed to DH that the decision to seal the areas was taken after three people tested positive for COVID-19 and keeping in mind the density of population in the region.

Supporting the clampdown, Chamarajpet MLA Zameer Ahmed Khan said, “The move was very much essential to contain the spread of the coronavirus. Three people from the area, who had been to Nizamuddin Dargah and Ajmer Dargah, voluntarily came for testing and they tested positive for COVID-19. We have a meeting with BBMP officials later in the day on the delivery of essential items to the people. We will decide on it during the meeting. I have also spoken to religious heads in the area and sought their cooperation for the clampdown.”

Lockdown vs clampdown

Unlike the lockdown that has been in place since March 25 during which people were allowed to step out to buy essential items like vegetables, meat and groceries, the clampdown bans people from leaving their homes.

“During clampdown, no one is allowed to come out of their houses. People have to stay indoors for 14 days. Only clinics, hospitals and medical shops will be allowed to open. All shops including vegetables, groceries and fruits will be shut completely. In these areas, the sale of vegetables was happening by way of push-cart vendors. We are discussing whether the same can be delivered at the doorstep by making use of push-cart vendors,” said Anil Kumar.

Massive surveillance

Putting in place a complete geographical clampdown in two wards, the BBMP and Health Department have made massive preparations for the surveillance work. “We have already put in place a team of 160 comprising ASHA workers and BBMP staff. They will be carrying out door-to-door surveillance work in the region,” the commissioner explained.

According to sources, both the wards have a population of about 1.5 lakh to 2 lakh in about 25,000 to 30,000 houses. “Those who have tested positive for COVID-19 have already been isolated. Their family members and those living adjacent to the houses have already been shifted to a quarantine facility at a hotel. The rest of the population will be checked by health workers for symptoms and related aspects. No one can take the situation very lightly at this stage,” Zameer Ahmed Khan said.

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Published 10 April 2020, 07:27 IST

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