Three more PCS officers tested positive in Punjab on Thursday along with one IAS officer in continuing spread of Covid-19 among the state’s officialdom that has come to light shortly after a meeting of 40 PCS officers in Chandigarh on July 3. SDMs of Payal (Ludhiana district), Dirba (Sangrur district) and Shahkot (Jalandhar district) tested positive, along with the Ropar DC on Thursday. Two out of the three PCS officials who tested positive Thursday – SDMs of Dirba and Shahkot – had attended the Chandigarh meeting.
As on Thursday, 14 PCS officers in Punjab are Covid-19 positive. Dr Rajesh Bhaskar, nodal officer of Covid-19 in Punjab, said, “Report of 5 more officers is pending.”
Meanwhile, SDM, Payal, Mankanwal Singh was part of a public gathering Rabbon Uchi village on Sunday where Punjab Health Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu had come. Sidhu told The Indian Express on Thursday: “I met the SDM at a social distance with mask on. I don’t think there is any need for me to get tested. Moreover, I am feeling fine and I am having no symptoms at all.”
While tests reports of several primary contacts of 40 PCS officers, who attended Chandigarh meeting, are awaited, these primary contacts will be tested again after five days.
Payal SDM Mankanwal Singh was having cough, throat infection and after ADC (General) Amarjit Singh Bains tested positive, he was also asked to get himself tested. His test report came positive Thursday evening. With Singh testing positive, Ludhiana district alone has 4 PCS officers who are Covid-19 positive.
ADC (General) Bains’s driver too has tested positive, while 59 other samples of government employees from Ludhiana along have tested negative. Wife and mother of SDM Khanna too are coronavirus positive.
Apart from SDM, Dirba, Manjeet Singh Cheema and SDM, Shahkot, Sanjeev Sharma, Ropar DC Sonali Giri has tested positive. Giri was tested after Ropar SDM’s test report came back positive on Wednesday. The offices of these concerned officials have been sanitised and sealed.
The meeting of PCS officers association at a Chandigarh hotel was held over a vigilance case against PCS officer Tarsem Chand, who was posted as regional transport authority, Faridkot. Chand was arrested by VB over graft charges and later released on bail after a week. He was on Thursday posted as Land Acquisition Controller, Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA). At the meeting on July 3, the PCS officers association had contended that he was wrongly framed.
A medical officer posted at Guru Gobind Singh Medical College and Hospital has also tested positive, confirmed Civil Surgeon, Faridkot, Dr Rajinder Kumar. With this the total number of health workers testing positive in the state now stands at 54.
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