Other States

Coronavirus | COVID-19 infections in Odisha jails touches 175

A health department worker wears a protective gear as he sanitise COVID-19 ward of a hospital in Ganjam. File

A health department worker wears a protective gear as he sanitise COVID-19 ward of a hospital in Ganjam. File   | Photo Credit: Biswaranjan Rout

As many as 54 inmates of the Rourkela Special Jail have tested positive for COVID-19 over the past few days, disturbing the Odisha government’s attempts to prevent infections in prison complexes.

The administration has commenced contact tracing, said the Directorate of Prisons and Correctional Service, Odisha. The total number of COVID-19 cases in the jail is now 78.

Seven inmates of the Sub Jail of Paralakhemundi in Gajapati district also tested positive on Thursday.

Currently, 175 inmates of different jails in the State have tested positive. About ten jails of Odisha have reported COVID-19 infections so far.

In view of the COVID-19 pandemic, the State government had released 16,789 undertrial prisoners and convicts to decongest prison cells. The e-Mulakat system was introduced to reduce physical interaction between prisoners and their attendants. However, the situation began to worsen when accused were remanded to judicial custody without proper testing.

Worst-affected districts

Odisha on Thursday reported 1,981 new COVID-19 cases — the highest single day spike so far — taking the State’s tally to 52,653. After the recovery of 36,478 patients, there are 15,808 active cases in the State. Ganjam and Khordha continued to be worst-affected districts, accounting for more than 40% of the total cases.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, who had reviewed the State’s COVID-19 situation on Wednesday, directed the administration to focus on Khordha, Cuttack, Jajpur and Sundargarh districts.

“We have one of the highest recovery rates in the country and we have one of the lowest fatality rates in the country. We are one of the few States in the country providing universal care for COVID patients completely free of cost,” said Mr. Patnaik.

He said the Odisha government was ramping up COVID-19 tests and in a span of three weeks, the government had set up five plasma therapy units from the scratch.

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Printable version | Sep 27, 2020 1:45:42 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/covid-19-infections-in-odisha-jails-touches-175/article32345690.ece

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