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Covid norms: PCMC bars ‘guests’ in cooperative housing societies, violators to face Rs 10,000 fine

The guidelines, issued by Municipal Commissioner Rajesh Patil on Wednesday evening, also outlined the norm for declaring a housing society as a micro-containment zone.

The PCMC on Monday directed the cooperative residential societies spread across the length and breadth of the industrial city to set up isolation centres in their respective club houses. (Express Photo)

In its revised guidelines as part of the ‘Break the Chain’ initiative, the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) has banned “outsiders” from entering the premises of cooperative housing societies, which have been directed to put up boards to this effect.

The guidelines, issued by Municipal Commissioner Rajesh Patil on Wednesday evening, also outlined the norms for declaring a housing society a micro-containment zone. “Any society where five or more Covid-19 positive patients are found will be declared a micro-containment zone,” the order said. “The declaration of micro-containment zones will be done by zonal officers,” the order added. Pimpri-Chinchwad so far has more than 2,000 micro-continament zones, most of which include cooperative housing societies, health department officials said.

The order said that RT-PCR tests of workers who enter the premises of housing societies should be undertaken and they should be vaccinated. The order said that all members of housing societies should ensure that norms regarding micro-containment zones and entry of outsiders are strictly followed. “Any violation will entail a fine of Rs 10,000,” the order said.

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But civic activist Deepak Pardeshi said the guidelines do not specify who “outsiders” are. “What about milk vendors who deliver milk packets, gas cylinder delivery boys who bring cylinders or people who deliver newspapers in the morning. The order is silent about this,” he said.

Another civic activist, Lahoo Landge, said, “The PCMC chief’s order does not clarify who should get done the RT-PCR test of workers who carry out some work in a housing society and who should pay for it. One can understand the society’s responsibility of asking workers to get their vaccination done, but we cannot force them.”

When contacted, PCMC spokesperson Shirish Poredi said, “Outsiders means guests of society members. They are not allowed for the next fortnight. However, milk vendors, domestic helps and car drivers are allowed.”

As for RT-PCR tests for workers entering society premises, Poredi said, “The society should do RT-PCR or rapid antigen test. The basic purpose is to ensure that the worker entering the society premises tests negative for Covid-19.”

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