Vigil heightened at inter-State checkposts

Mysuru District Health Officer K.H. Prasad visiting the inter-State checkpost at Bavali on Karnataka-Kerala border on Sunday.

Mysuru District Health Officer K.H. Prasad visiting the inter-State checkpost at Bavali on Karnataka-Kerala border on Sunday.

Amid the scare over a possible rise in COVID-19 cases on account of the threat posed by Omicron variant and the cluster outbreak in parts of State including Mysuru, health officials have heightened vigil at inter-State checkposts in Mysuru, Chamarajanagar, and Kodagu.

Only persons possessing an RT-PCR negative report with sample collected less than 72 hours earlier are being allowed to enter the State check through the Bavali checkpost on the Karnataka-Kerala border, health officials in Mysuru said. Even vaccinated persons have to produce the RT-PCR negative certificate.

Though the protocol had already been in place for the last couple of weeks, the vigil had been heightened in view of the fresh scare over cluster outbreak and the Omicron variant, an official added.

Travellers in private vehicles as well as those in buses would have to mandatorily produce the RT-PCR negative reports at the checkpost, said Dr. K.H. Prasad, Mysuru District Health Officer. Even buses would be stopped at the border checkpost and Health Department personnel along with police officials would physically check for the RT-PCR negative report from each passenger, said Dr. Prasad, who visited the checkpost on Sunday along with H.D. Kote’s Taluk Health Officer Ravikumar.

However, the people in goods vehicles that transport tomatoes and other vegetables, besides poultry products between the two States on a daily basis would have to produce the RT-PCR negative certificate once in 15 days.

Health officials also said that the contact number and addresses of persons passing through the checkpost would be noted down. Between 150 and 200 vehicles entered Karnataka from Kerala through the Bavali checkpost, officials said.

Meanwhile, similar vigil has been mounted at checkposts in neighbouring Chamarajanagar and Kodagu. Deputy Commissioner of Chamarajanagar Charulatha Somal visited the inter-State checkpost at Moolehole in Gundlupet taluk on Saturday night.

Apart from instructing the personnel to mandatorily check for RT-PCR negative report that is less than 72 hours old, Ms. Somal checked the register maintained by the officials to keep a tab on the vehicles passing through the checkpost. She was also accompanied by Additional Deputy Commissioner Kathyayini Devi and Gundlupet tahsildar Ravishankar.

The heightened vigil comes after a videoconference Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai had with officials of Health Department on Saturday.

“We have been asked to reactivate our surveillance system in view of the detection of the new strain, which has come just about the time when people had begun lowering their guard against COVID-19 thinking that the pandemic is ending,” said Dr. Prasad.

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Printable version | May 16, 2022 3:23:59 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/vigil-heightened-at-inter-state-checkposts/article37744393.ece