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Thursday, May 28, 2020

Tablighi Jamaat: Pune officials trace nearly 50 pc of Markaz visitors, look for the rest

A total of 182 individuals from five districts of Pune Division, who had visited Nizamuddin Markaz in mid-March, are being traced by government authorities after Nizamuddin emerged as a coronavirus hotpsot.

By: Express News Service | Pune | Published: April 1, 2020 11:44:14 pm
Across nation, race to trace contacts of Tabligh meeting Buses head from Nizamuddin West to quarantine facilities in Delhi on Tuesday afternoon. (Express photo by Praveen Khanna)i

Of the 136 persons from Pune district who had either visited the headquarters of Tablighi Jamaat in Nizamuddin in New Delhi or its nearby areas in March, the district administration has traced 70 till now. Officials are in the process of tracing the rest.

A total of 182 individuals from five districts of Pune Division, who had visited Nizamuddin Markaz in mid-March, are being traced by government authorities after Nizamuddin emerged as a coronavirus hotpsot. Apart from the 136 individuals from Pune district, 21 are from Kolhapur, 17 from Solapur, five from Satara and three from Sangli. In addition to these 182, information about seven additional persons who had reportedly visited the Tabligh headquarters was received after talking to those contacted.

“Of these, 106 persons have been traced in the five districts, including 70 in Pune, all five in the list in Satara, all three from the list in Sangli, all 17 in Solapur and 10 from the list in Kolahpur… 94 of them have been taken to institutional quarantine faciliies. Throat swabs of these individuals are being collected and sent for tests. Following test results, further action will be taken,” said Pune Divisional Commissioner Deepak Mhaisekar.

Prima facie, police investigation shows that as per the call records of those contacted, some of the individuals connected to the Tabligh, and who are yet to be traced, may be in another state currently. In some cases, SIM cards of the cellphones seems to have been changed, said Mhaisekar.

“When we could, we shared the information with authorities in the state or district concerned. As many as 51 are said to be another state and we are confirming their locations,” he said.

Of the 136 in Pune, 33 inviduals are residents of areas under the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC). By Tuesday evening, PCMC authorities had traced 23 people who had attended the Markaz in Delhi, and were in the process of collecting their swab samples to check for COVID-19.

“We have managed to locate 23 of those who attended the Tabligh meeting. Though 10 more have their registered addresses in Pimpri-Chinchwad, they seem to have migrated to other places sometime ago…,” Municipal Commissioner Shravan Hardikar told The Indian Express.

Hardikar said the 23 persons were taken to the YCM Hospital, where their swab samples were collected, and they were admitted to the hospital’s isolation unit. “None of them showed any symptoms… The swabs were collected and sent to the NIV. We expect their reports to land by Wednesday night or early on Thursday,” he said.

Hardikar said depending on the outcome of the tests, his team will trace the high-risk contacts of those who are positive. “The swab test of the high-risk contacts of those who are positive will be conducted, and the high-risk contacts of those who are negative will be home-quarantined. Those whose tests are negative will also be home qurantined,” he said.

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