A little over six per cent of the total 4,731 personnel in Ludhiana city police have been infected by the coronavirus, though several of them have recovered, data compiled by the police department has revealed.
A total of 299 policemen from Ludhiana city police got infected while performing frontline duties during the pandemic, as per the police data. While 193 personnel have recovered and joined back their duties, the force still has 104 active cases. Two of them – ACP Anil Kohli and ASI Jaspal Singh – died battling coronavirus.
Among the infected personnel, there have been five gazetted officers (AIG crime, 2 ACPs, 1 DCP & 1 ADCP) but the maximum infections were reported among assistant sub-inspectors (121), followed by constables (89), head constables (29), home guards (28), sub-inspectors (15), inspectors (7) and class-IV employees (5).
Ludhiana police commissioner Rakesh Agrawal said that the entire Ludhiana city police force has been tested at least once. “Some have even been tested twice or thrice. Those tested positive undergo testing again before joining back duties,” he said.
With two deaths, there was panic and fear among the infected personnel and to keep their morale high, now motivational sessions over Webex are being organized. Also, a WhatsApp group ‘Corona Warriors’ has been created for infected personnel. During the Webex sessions, Agrawal and personnel who have recovered from the virus, such as DCP (law and order) Ashwani Kapoor, share their experiences.
Speaking to The Indian Express, Rupinder Kaur Sran, ADCP (special branch) and nodal officer, COVID-19, Ludhiana police, said, “After a cop is tested positive, they are added to the WhatsApp group and told to install Webex app on their phones. We organize regular motivational sessions by CP, doctors, counsellors and psychologists to answer their queries on general health problems, usage of multivitamins, anxiety, sleeping disorders, fear psychosis among others. They are also being taught breathing techniques. In the WhatsApp group, they have to post their Oximeter readings twice a day and if saturation/pulse readings are below normal, immediate medical help is sought. Recovered cops share their experiences on Webex sessions.”
She added that a proforma for each positive cop is being maintained for 14 days, which records their symptoms.
“Even if there is a slight abnormality during home isolation, we get that person admitted to hospital immediately,” said ADCP.
Till now, six Punjab Police officials including ASI Davinder Singh from Fatehgarh Sahib, ASI Harish Kumar from Gurdaspur, ASI Lashkar Singh from Kapurthala and ASI Parmbir Singh from Muktsar apart from the two in Ludhiana have lost their lives to Covid.
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