On the sixth day of indefinite curfew in the state, as many as 70 labourers who had recently returned from Nepal have been put in quarantine, health officials said on Monday.
They had travelled to India between March 14-20. Nepalese constitute the major workforce in the apple-growing regions of the state. Nepalese who recently travelled to Rohru had made their way from the interstate border between Uttrakhand and Himachal Pradesh in Kuddu which is 14km from the main town in Rohru.
Nepalese who travelled to Rohru stayed at accommodations provided by orchard owners. Some of them have been kept in different facilities earmarked for suspected Covid-19 patients.
Migrant workers on Monday made beelines at different localities and suburbs in Shimla town as many non-government origanisations distributed cooked meals and ration packets to them during the curfew relaxation hours. However, the majority of social organisations whether in Shimla or outside the state could only provide ration supplies to limited number of people. Interestingly, social workers and political activists uploaded their pictures on their social media accounts publicising ration distribution. The government had sought help from social organisations to come forward to feed migrant labourers. There are scores of complaints of labourers being abandoned by contractors in the state. Meanwhile, the director-general of police Sita Ram Mardi appealed people to stay indoors and help the migrant labourers.
Disaster relief fund to be used for migrant workers
Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur said as per the guidelines of the Centre, the State Disaster Response Fund can now be utilised for the provision of food to people stranded in lockdown.
He said to ensure necessary arrangements for migrant labourers stranded due to lockdown, a district-wise integrated report has been prepared. He added that a total of 6,943 labourers reached at different villages of the state after February 15, but no one was found with flu-like symptoms. He said free ration has been distributed to 9,629 migrant labourers and arrangements for stay of 1,735 workers have been made different panchayats.
Two suspected Covid-19 cases test negative
Two suspected Covid-19 were admitted in the isolation ward of Deen Dayal Upadhyay hospital in Shimla town, the authorities said on Monday.
There samples have been sent for testing at Indira Gandhi Medical College (IGMC), Shimla.
Samples of both the patients were tested negative at IGMC.
DDU chief medical Officer Jitendra Chauhan said that the duo along with three others, all residents of Tutikandi locality, returned Shimla on March 20 from Ambala. A doctor from Ambala informed us that five people, who came in direct contact with a Covid-19 patient, have returned to Shimla and should be quarantined.
The district health authorities managed to trace them and two of them, who have shown symptoms of flu, have been admitted at the hospital while three others are home quarantined, said Dr Chauhan. Their samples have been sent for testing and reports are awaited, he said.
22 quarantine centres set up in Hamirpur
As many as 22 quarantine facilities comprising 1470 beds have been set up in Hamirpurpur district to fight the spread of Covid-19 infection, said deputy commissioner Harikesh Meena. Out of these, five centres each have been set up in sub-divisions Hamirpur and Bhoranj and four each in Nadaun, Sujanpur and Badsar. The doctors in charge for all these centres have also been deployed. Proper management of food, including sanitation has been made at these centres, Meena added.
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