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Karnataka: Five Padarayanapura riot accused test Covid-19 positive in jail

The Bengaluru Police had arrested 54 accused in connection with the Padarayanapura violence case that broke out on April 20 in the city, and shifted them to the Ramanagara prison.

Written by Darshan Devaiah BP | Bengaluru | Updated: April 24, 2020 1:21:01 pm
Karnataka: Two riot accused test positive in jail, three more prisoners a day later A policeman wears a visor and mask during the nationwide lockdown in the wake of coronavirus pandemic, in Bengaluru, Saturday, April 11, 2020. (PTI Photo: Shailendra Bhojak)

A day after two accused in the Padarayanapura violence case tested positive for Covid-19, three others were said to have contracted the disease as well. Karnataka Health Minister B Sriramulu Friday confirmed that a total of five accused in the case have tested positive and were shifted out of Ramanagara district jail, where they were lodged, and taken to a hospital in Bengaluru.

The Bengaluru Police had arrested 54 accused in connection with the violence that broke out on the night of April 19 in the city, and shifted them to the Ramanagara prison three days later.

According to sources, the Ramanagara district administration immediately shifted the two accused in the violence to Victoria Hospital after they tested positive last night. “The blood samples and throat swabs of the two had been collected before they were brought to the Ramanagara jail and the test results returned positive on Thursday evening,” said a health department official from Ramanagara.

Before being sent to Ramanagara jail, which is 60 kilometres outside state capital Bengaluru, the accused were lodged at the Parappana Agrahara for a day.

They were arrested after allegedly trying to clear barricades and vandalising a pandal put up at Padarayanapura in the city on Monday, which had been sealed by the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) to contain the spread of Covid-19.

Meanwhile, on Thursday night, former Karnataka Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy threatened to hit the streets if these prisoners were not moved out of Ramanagara district. As per the Centre’s Covid-19 protocol, Ramanagara is categorised as a green zone — which means it is free of coronavirus cases.

Kumaraswamy’s wife Anitha represents Ramanagara in the state Assembly.

“I had warned the government related to the transfer of Padarayanapura miscreants to Ramanagaram prison. Because of this Ramanagara has got coronavirus. Along with the two who have tested positive, seven or eight others were also shifted to quarantine centres,” Kumaraswamy said in a statement.

“The government should immediately quarantine the entire Ramanagara jail including the police officials, jail security staff and kitchen staff and they should be taken care of by the state government,” he added.

The death toll in Karnataka rose to 18 on Thursday after a 75-year-old Covid-19 positive patient from Bantwal, with a history of hypertension, stroke, and pneumonia, passed away at Wenlock District Hospital in Dakshina Kannada. The state has 445 infections.

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