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5 more at NDMC building test positive for Covid-19

The sixth floor of the Palika Kendra centre was sealed Wednesday, with officials saying it will be sanitised over the next two days. A decision on the sealing of the fifth floor will be taken on Thursday, an NDMC spokesperson said.

Written by Ananya Tiwari | New Delhi | Published: May 28, 2020 6:38:16 am
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Four staff members working on the sixth floor of the New Delhi Municipal Council’s (NDMC) Palika Kendra centre at Parliament Street have tested positive for Covid-19. On the fifth floor, a senior official, in his late 40s, in the estates department also tested positive for the virus on Wednesday. A total of seven staffers have contracted the virus so far. A 61-year-old doctor working at the Palika dispensary tested positive last Friday and a 56-year-old civil engineer in April.

Among the new cases are a 32-year-old senior accounts assistant, a peon working in the computer billing section, and two personal assistants to two accounts officers. The sixth floor of the Palika Kendra centre was sealed Wednesday, with officials saying it will be sanitised over the next two days. A decision on the sealing of the fifth floor will be taken on Thursday, an NDMC spokesperson said.

The peon and the senior accounts assistant tested positive on Tuesday, and the results of the two PAs came on Wednesday. The peon is currently in isolation at the Najafgarh quarantine centre, while the other three are in home quarantine.

Sudhir Singh Bisht, director of accounts/finance at the NDMC, said many other staff on the same floor are showing symptoms such as fever and cough and have begun working from home starting Wednesday: “The staff were coming to office in batches, so they were maintaining social distancing. The ones who were in close contact with the positive cases are getting their tests done.”

Nodal medical officer for the district, Dr Amresh, said seven-eight people have reported symptoms: “Most of them will be tested Thursday.”

The 61-year-old doctor at the Palika dispensary is in quarantine at her Janpath home.

Dr Amresh, also a doctor at the dispensary, said, “We are scanning how many patients she has seen in the last 10 days… and calling them to see if they are positive. Most patients are from the office complex and neighbourhood areas like Palika market and banks. People from the MHA office also come here. As far as people working in Palika Kendra are concerned, they are all low-risk contacts and had worn protective gear while visiting. Other than patients, we have traced 14-15 people — including the doctor’s co-workers, peons and safai karamcharis — and screened them.”

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