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Saturday, May 30, 2020

Lockdown Diary, Day 52: ‘Ghost’ quarantine centres of Uttarakhand; a Covid nursery rhyme and more

Here is a curated list of some interesting stories from across the country on Day 52 of India’s coronavirus lockdown.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Published: May 15, 2020 9:28:28 pm
Migrants labourers in Panchkula.

The death toll due to Covid-19 in the country rose to 2,649 and the number of cases climbed to 81,970 on Friday, registering an increase of 100 deaths and nearly 4,000 cases in the last 24 hours, the Union Health Ministry said. Of the total, as many as 51,401 cases were active while there were 27,919 patients discharged.

Earlier in the day, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman Friday announced 11 measures to help agriculture and allied activities as part of the third tranche of India’s economic package to overcome the fallout due to the Covid-19 pandemic. These measures will help the ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan’ (India’s self-reliant mission).

Of the 11 measures, eight were related to strengthening infrastructure, logistics and storage, while the remaining three were on governance administration and reforms.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court refused to entertain a public interest litigation seeking intervention in the movement of migrants across states. Stating that it was not possible for it to keep an eye on labourers on the road, the apex court left it upon the states to take the final call.

Here is a curated list of some interesting stories from across the country on Day 52:

‘Ghost’ villages as quarantine centres in Uttarakhand

Abandoned ‘ghost’ houses in Uttarakhand’s Pauri district are proving useful for the administration, which is converting them into quarantine centres for migrants returning in droves to the state. The houses earned the named after they became empty following a migration of locals.

“Derelict houses under padlocks are being used for the purpose as school buildings or panchayat bhawans where migrants are supposed to be quarantined are sometimes located in the central part of the villages where they might be more vulnerable to infection,” S P Thapliyal, Block Development Officer of Rikhnikhal block in Pauri district was quoted as saying by PTI.

Migrants from Uttrakhand before leaving fr their native places, Chandigarh.

Migrants coming from outside are being quarantined for 14 days by the state government either at home or at centres set up for the purpose as a precautionary measure.

Teacher creates Covid-19 nursery rhyme for kids in slums

A video of Sunita Nagkirti, who has been travelling to slums to educate people about the pandemic, went viral in which she was seen teaching a group of children the 20-second hand-washing technique using a nursery rhyme.

Initially, residents were wary of her, but she broke the ice by distributing essentials and masks, which she had purchased from her own pocket.

“Children were worried when they saw bottles of sanitisers and handwash liquids. But I used some popular Marathi nursery rhymes and created a fun handwash song,” she said.

An interactive dashboard to help contain coronavirus

Researchers at IIT Gandhinagar have developed an interactive COVID-19 dashboard that they say can help administrators, hospitals as well as the public in planning optimised testing for the novel coronavirus, and containing community infection in various post-lockdown scenarios.

The dashboard provides epidemiological scenario-specific information at a city-scale, said the researchers from the Indian Institute of Technology Gandhinagar (IITGN).

It is aimed at helping various stakeholders in optimised testing efforts and post-lockdown operations to contain community infection.

Migrants begin 1,000 km trek home, woman delivers baby on roadside

A mother and her child amongst a group of migrants passing through Lucknow.

At least 48 migrants left Haryana’s Ambala two weeks ago for Madhya Pradesh after being evicted by their landlords. Among the 48 were 20 children one five women, one of whom was pregnant.

Maan Kumari, 28, told the media and locals in Aligarh, where they had stopped earlier this week, that she had given birth on the side of the road somewhere between Ambala and Aligarh after walking at least 150 km.

The story caught the attention of district authorities, who have now made arrangements for the labourers to their native villages in Singrauli district, free of cost.

(With inputs from PTI)

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