Kerala

Siblings defy home quarantine, fly back to UK

Case against the brother-sister duo

Siblings from the U.K., who were put under home quarantine as per the COVID-19 guidelines, flew back on the sly much to the chagrin of the health officials at North Paravur, Ernakulam.

The police have registered a case against the brother and sister at the directive of the District Police Chief (Ernakulam Rural) K. Karthik.

The duo arrived from the U.K. on March 13 and were asked by the health authorities to remain on mandatory quarantine for 14 days at their home at Peruvaram in North Paravur.

They had no apparent symptoms but were asked to be in quarantine in keeping with the prevailing protocol of putting everyone coming from abroad on mandatory 14-day quarantine.

Phone contact

“They gave us a landline number and we were in constant contact with them since then till March 20. However, in between, they could not be contacted for a day. When contact was restored, we asked them where they were and they said they flew to Mumbai for a day for an emergency. But they did not share many details. We promptly informed North Paravur police about the violation of the protocol,” said a health inspector attached to Paravur municipality. However, on Sunday evening health authorities came to know that the duo had left for the U.K. on March 21 morning with three more days left for the quarantine period to end. “Only, an aged woman, a relative of the duo, lives in the house and all she knew was that they had left,” the health inspector said.

North Paravur police said they had contacted the duo on March 13 and 17. The intelligence officials contacted them on March 20 after health authorities alerted them about the violation of the quarantine protocol.

Health officials said that while there were many who were exemplary in their conduct and even volunteered to go on self-quarantine there were some others who kept sabotaging the hard-fought battle to ‘break the chain’ by giving scant regard to the instructions.

North Paravur municipality has 107 people on home quarantine since March 8 and some of them have completed the quarantine period since then.

Coercive measures

“People are aware of their rights but conveniently forget their responsibilities. Some of them keep questioning the need for quarantine without symptoms and break it. We have to employ even coercive measures of threatening to slap cases on them to make them fall in line besides creating awareness of the need to comply with the protocol for the good of society,” said K.S. Jayan, Station House Officer, North Paravur.

False alert

On the other hand, police also receive panic-stricken false alerts about people breaking quarantine like a recent one received by Maradu police. “We were alerted that a fellow put on quarantine was roaming around. But when we checked, it emerged that the poor man has been just to his portico,” said C. Vinod, inspector, Maradu.

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Printable version | Apr 8, 2020 10:59:40 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/siblings-defy-home-quarantine-fly-back-to-uk/article31146805.ece

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