As COVID-19 infections in paramilitary forces crossed the 500 mark, Home Minister Amit Shah Friday held a meeting with chiefs of all the forces and expressed concern. Among suggestions made during the meeting to curb the spread of infection are the pitching of tents in camps to increase distancing and contactless serving of food in the mess.
Sources said the system of living in barracks makes social distancing difficult. The problem has been aggravated by the fact that most of the infected personnel are asymptomatic.
“It has been decided that wherever barracks do not have enough space, forces will pitch tents to ensure social distancing,” a paramilitary officer said.
There would be significant changes in mess management. “There will be different sets of people for cutting and washing vegetables, and cooking and serving. Food will be served in shifts with fewer individuals allowed at a time,” another officer said.
The COVID-19 count in the BSF reached 224 Friday with 30 more new cases. In ITBP, 12 new cases took the case count to 92. In CRPF, 162 cases have been reported and 38 CISF personnel have been infected so far. In SSB, 14 personnel tested positive. Four paramilitary personnel have died so far.
An MHA statement said, “The Home Minister enquired about the situation regarding the security personnel affected by COVID-19 in each of the CAPFs…”
The DG of a paramilitary force said, “Our men are deployed on law and order duties, some of them in containment zones, so infections are unavoidable… The good thing is our men are fit… expecting a very high recovery rate.”
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