Manipur to end first phase of evacuation on May 25

Manipur to end first phase of evacuation on May 25
Arrival of stranded people from Hydrabad on a speical train at Jiribam of Manipur on Thursday.
Correspondent IMPHAL, May 21 | Publish Date: 5/21/2020 8:59:45 AM IST

In the backdrop of rising COVID-19 cases among returnees, Manipur government has decided to suspend evacuation of stranded people for some days after the first phase.

The first phase of evacuation of stranded state people at various places of the country started on May 10 after a special train with 1140 passengers which left Chennai arrived at Manipur’s only railway station at Jiribam on May 13 last.

Till Wednesday, the state government has evacuated as many as 5,844 stranded people and another 6010 stranded people is expected to arrive in the next few days, during the first phase due to end by May 25.

The 6010 stranded include 430 stranded people (including six children) who arrived on Thursday on a special train from Hyderabad.

The train arrived at Jiribam railway station around 10 am and returnees have headed for their respective districts on 15 buses arranged by the state transport department.

An emergency cabinet meeting convened by chief minister N Biren Singh on Wednesday reviewed the status of incoming stranded people, the reported positive cases and status of the quarantine centres.

Official reports said that two more individuals who recently returned to the state were tested positive on Thursday. With the two, the total number of COVID-19 cases in the state rose to 27 including two recoveries.

The state had recorded 16 positive cases in a single day after five returnees whose test results received late Wednesday showed positive for the virus.

The 27 positive cases were detected during testing for the virus of a total of 3,087 individuals so far, till Wednesday.

The cabinet has decided to bring back  stranded people in phases and suspension of the evacuation of the stranded people till completion of testing for COVID-19 of the returneesat the quarantine centres.

The first phase of evacuation will continued till May 25 and government will plan second phase after completion of mandatory testing of all returnees, an official source said today.

To control the spread of COVID-19, the cabinet further decided to segregate incoming people from the existing inmates in quarantine centres and not to mix them up , the source said.

The daily incoming people will be kept in separate locations till the testing of the people currently lodging at the quarantine centres is completed.

The cabinet also decided to treat all community quarantine centres as pooled centres of the district concerned for more effective control while approving sanction of Rs 10 lakh for each assembly constituency form MLA’s local area development (MLALAD) funds for maintenance of the community quarantine centres, the source added. 

Meanwhile, following Wednesday’s cabinet decision, state health department has intensified sample collection in 17 centres after testing capacity has been increased from the earlier 200 samples to 900 daily.

The department is targeting to increase the capacity to 1500 per day. 

As per the protocol, all people entering Manipur has to be screened at Mao Gate (bordering Nagaland) and Jiribam (bordering Assam) as well as in the railway station at Jiribam.

All passengers coming by train were also screened before boarding.  People with suspected symptoms were not allowed to board the train. After arrival, if anyone is found having symptoms, the person will be shifted directly to a hospital.

All others will go to quarantine centre compulsory where they will be tested by RT-PCR (real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction) test, which is a more accurate test.

Those tested positive will be sent to hospital and negative cases to home quarantine for a period of 14 days. In Manipur, all the cases so far were confined to the quarantine centres and there was no case detected from general public.

The state government is following strict procedure and more than the prescribed norms to ensure safety of the people, the source said.


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