THE DEATH toll from Covid-19 in the Maharashtra Police has reached 100 and the total case count has crossed the 9,000 mark, as per official data released on Thursday. Of the 9,096 Covid-19 police cases in the two lakh-strong police force of Maharashtra, as reported till Thursday morning, at least 7,084 personnel have recovered while 1,912 remain active cases. Of the 100 police personnel who have succumbed to the infection, eight are officers and 92 constabulary staff. A large portion of the police force continues to be deployed to enforce restrictions at containment zones and at hospitals and Covid Care Centres across the state.
At least 140 cases were reported among Maharashtra Police personnel on Wednesday. On July 1, the number of positive cases in Maharashtra Police was 4,900 and only 60 fatalities were reported till then. Since then, as many as 4,100 cases and 40 deaths have been reported in the state police force.
Many police stations and various branches from jurisdictions across the state have been impacted by severe staff crunch after cases were detected among police staff and the affected personnel and their close contacts, including colleagues, were hospitalised and isolated.
The major portion of the total cases in Maharashtra Police have been among local police personnel in Mumbai, its surrounding areas and personnel of Maharashtra SRPF deployed in high risk areas who were later repatriated to their home units. Besides Mumbai and the SRPF, cases have continued to rise among the Nashik Rural, Thane City, Pune City, Navi Mumbai, Mumbai Railway and Solapur police forces.
Since the lockdown in March, there have been 323 cases of assault on on-duty police officers who were part of enforcement deployments across the state. At least 86 personnel have been injured in these attacks.
Since the beginning of the lockdown, offences have been registered under Indian Penal Code Section 188 against violators of prohibitory orders issued at the local level. Till now, more than 2.15 lakh offences have been registered across the state.
Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh recently announced that families of police personnel who die of Covid-19 will be allowed to live at their officially allotted residence till the designated time of retirement of the deceased officer.
As a precautionary measure, as many as 23,000 police personnel, aged between 50 and 55 years, are being given low-risk tasks while 12,000 others, aged above 55 years having comorbidities, have been given the choice to stay home. Dedicated Covid Care Centres and hospitals have been set up for the police at various places.
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