Kolkata

4 test positive in Valley, 417 potential virus carriers in hiding

Four more persons tested positive for COVID-19 in Kashmir on Wednesday as the administration fears that 417 people are on the run because of their travel history and may be potential asymptomatic virus carriers in society.

“Doctors suggest actual cases in the community could probably be more than those tested positive. For heaven’s sake, stay at homes and report to designated hospitals if you have symptoms or travel history,” Srinagar district Magistrate Dr. Shahid Choudhary said.

The appeal comes on a day when J&K witnessed the highest single-day jump in COVID-19 cases, with four persons testing positive from north Kashmir’s Bandipora district, taking the toll to 11. The fresh cases came just a day after three, including a member of a religious group, tested positive.

“Preliminary findings suggest they were in close contact with the Srinagar patient who tested positive yesterday [Tuesday]. All five reported to have participated together in a religious event,” said government spokesman Rohit Kansal.

Amid the ongoing lockdown, a major drive is on in the Valley to make a list of the contacts of these fresh positive cases.

Official sources said 471 people, who have travel history, are hiding in Kashmir to escape screening and likely quarantine but “could be potential asymptomatic carries of the novel coronavirus”.

“Some 1,800 persons returning from abroad have been quarantined in 90 facilities set up so far; over 150 persons hiding travel histories traced and were put under quarantine in the past one week,” said Dr. Choudhary.

To encourage people with travel history to come forward, the Pulwama administration on Wednesday offered pick and drop facility for such persons.

Around 1,750 persons of more than 3,000, who recently travelled abroad, have been put under quarantine in 40 of the 90 facilities in Srinagar.

Mirwaiz’s group calls for voluntary disclosure

The Mutahida Majlis Ulema, an organisation headed by Hurriyat chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, appealed to people “to voluntarily self report and not conceal or lie about it”.

“Such people are doing a great disservice to themselves, their family, neighbourhood and the community at large which amounts to an act transgression before Allah,” said a spokesman of the organisation.

In its efforts to ensure complete lockdown across Jammu and Kashmir, the police have registered 218 FIRs against violators.

In central Kashmir’s Ganderbal district, 14 violators were arrested, police said.

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Printable version | Mar 30, 2020 1:32:31 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kolkata/4-test-positive-in-valley-417-on-the-run/article31167775.ece

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