April 24, 2021 4:26:42 am
The Covid helpline numbers listed on the official Panchkula district website are either out of service, unavailable, switched off or are just not picked despite several calls, allege locals. Meanwhile, an online search of ‘Covid helpline number Panchkula’ reportedly directs people to a ‘voter helpline’.
It was on Thursday that Advocate Ketan Khurana of Panchkula attempted to locate help for her old neighbour and searched for Panchkula’s Covid helpline number online.
“I was directed to the district website – panchkula.nic.in, where 1950 has been shown in bold as the helpline number for Covid. I tried calling several times but it said ‘unavailable’. Thinking the number was busy due to high number of Covid cases, I kept trying. It then connected and to my utter shock, turned out to be an election helpline asking me to choose regarding voting in Chandigarh, Haryana and Punjab,” recounts Ketan.
He then tried calling several other numbers listed below, “but the first one was disconnected without being picked, second was a wrong number, third and fourth-both landlines were either not picked or were constantly busy,” he says.
The neighbour then had to be rushed to a private hospital of Chandigarh where an Covid ICU bed was found available.
Ketan says he has since tweeted about the same to the CM office as well as Home and Health Minister Anil Vij, but to no avail.
“At a time when even minutes and seconds are crucial, as the state overflows with positive cases, no correction has been made for more than 24 hours,” adds Ketan.
While the state government has issued 1075 as the helpline number and the phone number 8558893911 has been issued for Panchkula, Faridabad and Gurugram, but the district portal continues to display a wrong helpline number.
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