Amarjeet Singh (63), a COVID-19 patient from Gaggarpur village of Sangrur, was discharged on Thursday. But even while in hospital, he was aware that harvesting of wheat on four acres of his land was done and now it was time to take the crop to mandis in turns.
“Now, straw management work is left. I advised workers engaged in the fields about harvesting over phone. I also told them about straw management. I am a mechanical engineer and I am aware of working of farm machines,” he told The Indian Express.
Amarjeet, who tested positive on April 9 and works with a private firm in Madhya Pradesh, added: “I was taking precautions since February. But on March 24, company told us to go back and I boarded flight to Delhi and later from Delhi, I came to Sahnewal. I think I picked the infection from somewhere in flight as I drank water in the flight. From Sahnewal, I took a cab till Barnala and later a bike ride brought me to my village in Sangrur.”
He said,”I was in self-quarantine in my village, and then I was in isolation at the Sangrur Civil Hospital. I kept myself busy by making video calls to family members, and friends in Sangrur. I also called my elder son in Canada regularly and prayed three times a day. I would talk to doctors as well anytime over phone if I had any doubt.”
At two other rooms at the Sangrur Civil Hospital were two Tablighi Jamaat members, one who attended the Delhi congregation and other an employee of the Malerkotla Markaz. All three patients were asymptomatic.
Patients also spoke about working out and sticking to a timetable to keep themselves busy.
“We encourage patients to make a timetable so that they don’t feel bored. They pray, even talk to their family members and hence are aware as what is happening worldwide. They talk to doctors any time apart from when they visit them,” said Dr Upasana Bindra, District Epidemiologist, Sangrur.
In Mansa Civil Hospital, 11 Tabligh members were brought to be treated for COVID-19. Nine among them are still there, while two have been discharged.
A 52-year-old among these nine, who had attended the Delhi religious event, said: “We all are in a big hall in civil hospital, Mansa and our beds are far away. We offer namaz five times a day. Most of our time is spent in praying. We are praying for recovery of patients all over the world and please you also pray for all of us.”
At the Ludhiana Civil Hospital, Dr Geeta Kataria, Senior Medical Officer, said they are planning to set up LED TV and music system in the isolation ward.
“We will refrain from news channels and will focus on entertainment only,” said Dr Kataria.
She added: “Asymptomatic patients remain busy in many activities throughout the day. Doctors also encourage them to work as per a timetable. Liyakat Ali, a patient of Rajgarh village of Ludhiana, who has been discharged, stuck to a routine religiously. This keeps patients positive and motivated.”
A 72-year-old, who was treated at Ludhiana Civil Hospital and discharged on April 23, said: “I will guide others after going home. Staying alone is difficult but not impossible. I ate khichdi, dalia which used to come from my home and used to take milk from hospital. Otherwise, they used to provide me food in proper time.”
But apart from praying, watching TV and talking to friends, there are some who also exercise to keep themselves busy.
Gunman of the deceased Ludhiana ACP, who tested positive on April 17, is being treated at the Ferozepur Civil Hospital. He said: “I do push-ups, planks, squats etc to stay fit.” He even posted a video of himself exercising within the isolation centre. He is asymptomatic, and so are two other patients here who are in a separate ward.
A 45-year-old patient at Faridkot said that he does a one-hour walk within the ward as he is a fitness freak, adding that his 33-year-old friend in the separate room also does fitness training. “Washing clothes is another thing which we have learnt during treatment. Many people call us throughout the day. We have to switch off phones for 2 hours in afternoon so as to take rest. Otherwise, our friends and relatives keep calling us to know about our health,” said both friends who are at Guru Gobind Singh Medical College and Hospital in Faridkot.
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