May 11, 2020 11:53:24 pm
Stranded Indians returning to Pune from abroad as part of the ‘Vande Bharat Mission’ will be placed under “institutional quarantine” at four city hotels, where they will have to pay for their stay during the period of quarantine, said Pune Divisional Commissioner Deepak Mhaisekar on Monday.
Mhaisekar said in the last few days, 121 persons had arrived in the city from abroad and all of them were in quarantine. He also said the travellers had come to Pune from Singapore, Philippines and London, and 20 others had arrived at Sangli, Satara, Solapur and Kolhapur.
“According to the rules, all those who are coming to Pune from abroad are being placed in institutional quarantine compulsorily. Four different hotels have been contracted for this purpose by the district collector. They will stay there strictly on payment basis and will be allowed to go at the end of the 14-day quarantine period,” Mhaisekar said.
Pune District Collector Naval Kishore Ram said the daily test count had increased by 25 per cent in the last few days in the district and the increased tests were being conducted in a targeted manner at hotspot areas. He said although the number of tests had increased considerably, the corresponding “positive detections” had not gone up in a similar manner, showing stabilisation of the spread of the infection.
“Earlier, we were testing about 800 samples per day. Now, we are testing an average of 1,000 samples per day. However, the average positive case count remains on the same level as before. This is a positive sign and we are hopeful that in some time the curve will flatten,” Ram said.
On Monday, the collector ordered to put every incoming person from other states or districts through compulsory medical screening for Covid-19 symptoms.
“Every traveller from another district or state should be stopped at the check post at taluka boundary or village entrance and screened for Covid-19 symptoms. If they display any symptom, he or she will be stamped with ‘home quarantine’ and sent home,” Ram said.
Ram also said the administration was determined to create a situation that was conducive for migrant workers to stay put in Pune.
“We have started industrial units in rural areas. Construction activities are resuming in Pune and Pimpri-Chinchwad. Once employment opportunities open up, workers will decide to stay back. Today, in Daund, 300 to 400 people in a shelter home said they don’t want to travel to their home states. There were about 40 to 50 others from Uttarakhand who did not board a train that left for their home state, opting to stay back and work. The same happened in Chakan. The mood is changing and it will change further,” Ram said.
Asked about Pune Police “unofficially” ordering shops to close at noon despite the Pune Municipal Corporation and district administration allowing them to stay open from 7 am to 7 pm, District Collector Naval Kishore Ram said the order issued by the PMC commissioner to let shops open from morning to evening should be followed by the police.
“I have discussed this issue with the police and they have told us that in some areas, where social distancing norms were not being followed, they had to temporarily direct owners to close their shops. We are in contact with the police commissioner and will discuss the issue further,” Ram said.
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