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Tuesday, July 07, 2020

Spike in densely populated colonies alarms Chandigarh

The Covid-19 cases in Chandigarh have been reported from from Dhanas, Khuda Lahora, Khuda Alisher, Daria, Bapu Dham Colony, Mani Majra, Colony number 4, Mauli Jagran, Dadu Majra and also the Sector 30 EWS belt, all of which are densely populated areas.

Written by Hina Rohtaki | Chandigarh | Published: June 18, 2020 10:04:24 am
Chandigarh coronavirus cases, coronavirus cases Chandigarh, Chandigarh news, city news, Indian Express Passengers wearing mask to protect themselves from Coronavirus at Chandigarh Railway Station. (Express photo by Jaipal Singh)

The increasing Covid-19 cases in Chandigarh that are being reported from densely populated colonies and congested areas pose a big challenge for the UT Administration. On Tuesday, a coronavirus case was reported from Sector 25’s Janta and Kumhar colony that has a population of about 40,000 people. The following day, a resident of another congested colony, Ram Darbar, tested positive.

The Covid-19 cases in Chandigarh have been reported from from Dhanas, Khuda Lahora, Khuda Alisher, Daria, Bapu Dham Colony, Mani Majra, Colony number 4, Mauli Jagran, Dadu Majra and also the Sector 30 EWS belt, all of which are densely populated areas. Practicing social distancing here seems a distant dream as in some belts, six to seven people stay in a room. Most of these areas are also affected from water shortage and getting sufficient water even for daily chores remains to be a struggle. Moreover, due to the scarcity, as water tankers arrive, they trigger a huge rush in the areas, defying the purpose of distancing.

Emphasising on comprehensive plans to contain outbreak in dense areas, a PGI doctor said, “When cases are reported from dense colonies and slums, we feel that immediate spacing out should be done. Arrangements of stay should be made in nearby schools or other complexes so that there is no further spread of the disease. There has to be a policy in place immediately for these areas.”

Need for plans to space out

While enforcing the practice of social distancing and ensuring quarantine is still convenient in urban belts, it is a difficult task to implement the same in colonies. “In the days to come, the situation can be alarming if we do not make a comprehensive plan to space out here. Random testing in these areas, along with IEC activities can be really helpful. Especially now, when the unlock phase is going on, people need to be reminded that COVID-19 has not gone,” the PGI doctor added.

Different GROUND REALITY: ‘WERE ASKED TO SHIFT OUR COVID POSITIVE RELATIVE OURSELVES’

Rajinder Yadav, a resident of Colony number 4 which saw COVID-19 case in the past, said that the ground work for prevention of the spread is deficient. He said, when his relative in Maloya was diagnosed the disease, the authorities in Government Multi Speciality Hospital in Sector 16 asked the family members to take the patient to the ward and also refused to equip them with any protective gear.

“I do not think it is ignorance. When the staff got to know that the person was COVID-19 positive, they asked us to shift her to the ward. We asked them to at least give us gloves or some protective equipment and they replied that it is meant only for staff and not us,” Rajinder said. He added, “I think senior officers should pay a visit to the government hospitals to know how positive patients are being treated.”

Yadav said that in his colony, where COVID-19 cases were reported, only adjacent houses have been vacated.

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