Fourteen personnel from the Pune-based unit of the State Reserve Police Force (SRPF) tested positive for Covid-19 on Tuesday, taking the total number of cases in the Maharashtra SRPF above 520.
Two companies of the Pune-headquartered ‘Group 2’ of the SRPF — comprising around 100 personnel each — had been deployed in Mumbai. They returned to their base in Pune on May 21. While all of them were kept in quarantine as a precautionary measure after arrival, their swab tests were also conducted.
M Ramkumar, Group 2 Commandant, told The Indian Express, “Results of swab tests came back on Tuesday… 14 of the constables have tested positive.”
The 14 additional cases take the total number of positive cases in ‘Group 2’ to 70, over 40 of whom have already recovered. Test results of some people were awaited, said officials.
The total number of Covid-affected personnel in Maharashtra state police force was 1,890, as on Tuesday morning. Majority of these cases are local police personnel from Mumbai and surrounding areas, Nashik district’s Malegaon city, or personnel of SRPF who were deployed in these high-risk areas and later repatriated to their home units. The number of coronavirus cases in Maharashtra SRPF was 520 on Tuesday, around 370 of whom have already recovered.
The SRPF units, referred to as groups, based in Aurangabad, Hingoli, Jalna, Daund, Pune have been the worst hit.
The SRPF, which is the reserved police force under the Maharashtra State Police, has 16 Groups based at stations across the state. Since the lockdown began, anywhere between 40 to 50 companies of the SRPF, mobilised from these 16 groups, have been deployed in highly affected regions like Mumbai, Thane, Pune, Pimpri-Chinchwad and Malegaon at any given point. One company usually comprises 100 to 120 personnel headed by an officer.
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