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Covid 19 update: Karnataka imposes 14-day quarantine,tougher restrictions for arrivals from 6 worst-hit states

The Karnataka government has made 14-day home quarantine mandatory for all passengers coming into the state except for those arriving from high virus prevalence states like Maharashtra, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Delhi, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh, who will have to undergo seven days of institutional quarantine and seven days of home quarantine.

Those coming from the six states that are worst hit by coronavirus will be allowed to complete the second week of quarantine at home if their Covid test comes out to be negative when tested 5-7 days after their arrival. However, pregnant women, children under 10 years of age, senior citizens over 80 years of age and terminally ill patients will be allowed to be in home quarantine but only if they are found not infected with coronavirus when tested immediately after their arrival in the state.

Businessmen coming to state for urgent work will also be exempted from institutional quarantine as long as they furnish a test report confirming their negative status. The test report, however, cannot be more than two days old from the date of travel and must be issued by an ICMR approved laboratory.

The strict measures were announced on a day when the state recorded its single biggest day rise with 216 new Covid-19 positive cases. Almost all of them are returnees from Maharashtra, except for 12 people. More than half of the 1,307 active Covid-19 cases in the state have been recorded in the last one week after the return of a large number of migrants from the neighbouring states.

The state till date has registered 1,959 patients of coronavirus including 42, who died and 608, who were discharged.

An official of the state health department said 442 passengers who arrived by air on Saturday from Doha, Jakarta, Male and Kula Lumpur had been quarantined.

Meanwhile, there was some chaos and confusion near palace grounds located in the heart of Bangalore as thousands of people mainly from Odisha and the northeastern states thronged it in the hope of catching a Shramik train back to their native places. A state health department official, who did not want to be identified, said the confusion was the result of a “miscommunication”.

The official said that about 1,500 people, registered on the Seva Sindhu app for migrants looking to return, had been sent SMS asking to assemble near palace grounds for a medical check-up and onward bus journey to the train station for catching their respective Shramik trains.

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“However, they forwarded the messages to their friends whose turn had not yet come. This resulted in a huge number of people assembling near the grounds,” he said.

When HT spoke to several of the migrants on Saturday afternoon, they said, they had been waiting since 6 am in the morning with no food or water or any toilet facilities but only with their luggage, in the hope that they could board a train and head back to their native states.

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Karnataka’s medical education minister K Sudhakar, who landed at the spot, tried pacifying the migrants. KPCC President D K Shivakumar, who also visited the spot, reiterated the party’s offer to foot the travel bill and castigated the government for “not making proper arrangements and making them wait under the hot sun without food and water”.

On Friday the Karnataka government headed by BS Yediyurappa had announced that it would bear the cost of travel for all migrants looking to return to their native states.

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