THE Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) on Thursday warned landlords and housing societies that it will be forced to file FIRs against them if they oppose the home isolation of Covid-19 patients with mild symptoms, or those who are asymptomatic. A landlord from Pimpri area, who had strongly opposed home isolation of a patient, was recently forced to backtrack after the civic body’s warning.
Appealing to local residents, landlords and housing societies to extend their help, Municipal Commissioner Shravan Hardikar said, “Home quarantine is a government-directed process. If anyone is refusing to listen or is trying to put hurdles in the process, then we will have no option but to file FIRs against them. We have already started the process of filing FIRs against those who are creating hurdles in the home quarantine process.”
Ten days ago, PCMC had started allowing home quarantine of patients with mild symptoms or those who are asymptomatic. The process involved five days of hospitalisation and 12 days of home quarantine. However, four days ago, PCMC changed the norms again, allowing immediate home quarantine of such patients for a period of 17 days.
On the Pimpri incident, PCMC health officials said the patient was found positive for Covid-19 on June 26. For two days, he was admitted at YCM Hospital, and was then admitted to the Covid care centre at Balewadi. “He was found to have no symptoms, so it was decided to send him for home isolation. The patient lived in a rented flat in Pimpri. When he went to his flat and tried to show the documents to his landlord, the latter insisted that the patient return to the hospital,” said an official.
Hardikar said a sepcial team was sent to “convince and reason” with the landlord. “The landlord changed his mind and we decided against filing an FIR,” he said.
Meanwhile, the PCMC on Thursday received approval from the Indian Council of Medical Research to set up a coronavirus testing lab at YCM Hospital, the dedicated Covid hospital located in Sant Tukaram Nagar. With the latest lab facility, PCMC expects to ramp up its testing capacity further.
“We will start the laboratory from tomorrow. We have already trained our technicians for the purpose,” said Hardikar. He said initially, the civic body will carry out tests of 20 samples, but then scale it up to 100 tests a day. “In the future, we expect to carry out 300 tests daily,” he said
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