May 9, 2021 12:38:15 am
The number of rail passengers testing positive for Covid-19 after arriving in Mumbai from places of “sensitive origin” saw a rise after Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal were added to the list last week.
The Government Railway Police (GRP), which screens passengers, found 276 passengers testing positive in a week.
All underwent rapid antigen tests, whose results are available instantly.
The screening process began on Àpril 17. Till the end of the month, 51, 886 passengers were screened and 224 of them tested positive.
After Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal were added to the list of states of sensitive origin, in seven days till May 8, 51,149 passengers were screened with 276 testing positive.
Overall, since April 17, 1.06 lakh passengers were screened in 20 days, with 500 testing positive.
Struggling to contain the Covid-19 surge, the Maharashtra government had on April 18 declared six states – Kerala, Goa, Gujarat, Delhi-NCR, Rajasthan and Uttarakhand – as places of sensitive origin in a bid to stop the “influx of other variants of coronavirus”. On May 1, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal were added to this list.
As per the order, passengers travelling to Maharashtra from these eight states must carry negative reports of RT-PCR tests conducted within 48 hours of travel. Even if passengers carry negative test reports, the GRP makes all undergo thermal scanning. If a passenger’s temperature is found to be high in the scanning, the person is made to undergo rapid antigen test.
The GRP is screening passengers at six rail terminus (Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Lokmanya Tilak, Dadar, Panvel, Mumbai Central and Bandra) and five stations (Thane, Kalyan, Borivali, Vasai road and Palghar).
GRP Commissioner Quaiser Khalid said, “We have kept only one entry and exit point open at these stations. We man the points so we can check all passengers. If a passenger tests positive for Covid-19, they are quarantined.”
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