December 13, 2021 6:05:01 pm
Bengaluru police have arrested four persons for allegedly helping a South African national to break quarantine and leave India with a fake Covid-negative test report before he was later diagnosed with the Omicron variant of coronavirus.
“Prima facie, it has been found that the South African national fled the country by getting a fake Covid-negative report. Four persons have been taken into custody, of which two are from a private laboratory and two are from a company, of which the South African national is one of the directors,” said a police officer.
The 66-year-old man, an employee of a South African pharma firm, tested positive for Covid-19 on his arrival in India on November 20.
Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) officials visited him at Shangri La Hotel in central Bengaluru and asked him to remain in quarantine for 14 days and meanwhile, his samples were sent for genome sequencing.
However, the man left the hotel and the city on November 27 after producing a Covid-negative test report without informing the BBMP officials. The civic agency filed a complaint against the hotel staff and the man for violating the Karnataka Epidemic Diseases Act, 2020.
On December 2, the Karnataka government and the Union health ministry identified that the South African national was infected with Omicron as the genome sequencing result came out.
A senior police officer said that city police commissioner Kamal Pant has also briefed Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai in this matter.
The police officials who have tracked the whereabouts of the foreign national say that he has reached Johannesburg, South Africa.
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