Contrary to reports that an Indian citizen was denied entry into Bangladesh over coronavirus scare, the authorities Wednesday clarified that it was, in fact, a Bangladeshi national who was barred and sent back from the Akhaura International Check-Post (ICP) in Tripura after a medical helpdesk screened him with high temperature.
Speaking to indianexpress.com, Tripura Health and Family Welfare Director Dr. Radha Debbarma informed that a Bangladeshi national was screened with high body temperature during thermal scanner check-up for coronavirus on Tuesday. The person was subsequently denied entry into India and sent back. The clarification comes in the midst of rumours that an Indian citizen was denied entry into Bangladesh after thermal scanners picked up high temperatures on his body.
“There is no one infected with coronavirus in Tripura, nor there is any such suspected case. We identified 28 persons who recently travelled to NCOV affected countries. 19 of them have proven clear of the disease. Others haven’t shown any symptoms but are still on self-observation”, Dr. Debbarma said.
Tripura also announced that it would close down Border Haats with Bangladesh as a precautionary measure. Earlier, Manipur had shut down border points with Myanmar to prevent the possible spread of the disease.
Tripura has 8 Land Custom Stations and an ICP with Bangladesh across 856 Km international borderline shared by the state.
A memo of the Health and Family Welfare Department on advisory for novel coronavirus asked Land Custom officials and the BSF authorities to issue directives to all their staff members to follow proper hygiene protocol to contain the chain of infection, particularly from Bangladeshi immigrants.
“For the time being, immigrants with suspected case history and suffering from any respiratory symptom should be assessed properly before their entry into our state. Moreover, all Border Haats may be closed for the time being in consultation with Bangladeshi authorities”, the state health department advisory reads.
Tripura has two functional Border Haats with Bangladesh at Kamalasagar in Sepahijala district and Srinagar in South Tripura. Three more border haats are in the pipeline.
For railway travel passengers, help desks would now be set up at Dharmanagar Railway Station in North Tripura, which is one of the main entry points inside Tripura for passengers from Assam and other states. These help desks would engage in awareness generation and ask for self-reporting of passengers on their health status. District Surveillance Units were asked to periodically review the situation in respective jurisdictions.
The government has also advised people to avoid mass gatherings of any form or postpone them till the NCOV-19 spread is contained. It also appealed people to take necessary restrictions on mass gatherings to avoid severe acute respiratory illness (SAR) case or influenza-like illness including NCOV-19.
In case such gatherings are unavoidable, the government has asked to ensure precaution through risk communication materials. The restrictions which were adopted as per the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) advisory sent to all state governments, would continue until further orders.
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