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15 lakh who flew to India between January 18 and March 23 under the lens | India News


NEW DELHI: Some 15 lakh people who returned to India between January 18 and March 23, when the total ban on international arrivals took effect, are at the center of intense scrutiny to ensure that they do not become Covid-19 transmitters with the cabinet secretary. writing to states and asking them to track people who have not been considered in the detection quarantine surveillance process.

Many of these people are part of home or institutional quarantine programs launched for foreign travelers, but authorities said there were “some gaps” and states were asked to track missing links, as international travel has been the link key to Covid-19 cases. Some of these people would have completed 14 days after arrival and are now safe. There are others that may be potential propagators and need scrutiny.

Underlining a discrepancy between the arrivals and those responsible for surveillance, Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba said the MHA Immigration Office had “shared details of more than 15 lakh of incoming international passengers with states to monitor Covid-19 “while fewer people were being monitored

The MHA Immigration Office had “shared details of more than 15 lakh of incoming international passengers with states for Covid-19 monitoring,” while fewer people were being monitored. “It is important that they be closely watched to prevent the spread of the epidemic,” the letter said.

“We are watching for arrivals, particularly those who arrived in India in March,” said a government source. Those who arrived in India must be in the integrated disease surveillance program so that the authorities are sure that they are out of the danger zone. The Center has called on states to immediately step up surveillance and track down all these travelers who are seen as crucial to breaking the chain of transmission.

Highlighting the “gaps” in the number of passengers that should have been monitored and the actual count, Gauba asked states to immediately identify all of those travelers and monitor them closely to prevent the spread of the epidemic. As a key preventive measure against Covid-19 that has spread in more than 170 countries so far, the Center began monitoring all international passengers arriving in India in the past two months to ensure that carriers of the virus could isolate and quarantine.

“I don’t think I need any evidence that we started very early. We still don’t have community transmission, “said Dr. RR Gangakhedkar, chief of epidemiology and communicable diseases at the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR), referring to measures such as isolation, social distancing, and government-initiated tests of war up to here.

As of Friday, the Ministry of Health reported 724 positive cases of Covid-19 with 75 new cases and four deaths reported in the last 24 hours. Of this, 640 were active cases, while 66 were cured and one migrated. Total deaths were 77.

The joint secretary of the Ministry of Health, Lav Agarwal, said the Gauba letter was part of a routine communication and orientation with the states to ensure that collective efforts were made to monitor all international passengers. Gauba said in his letter that this was not the first time that the Center reminded states of the need to closely monitor Indians and foreigners with travel records. The health ministry has sent repeated messages to states to intensify surveillance.

“I understand that the ministry of health has repeatedly emphasized this and asked states and UTs to take immediate action in this regard. Therefore, I would like to request to ensure that concerted and sustained measures are taken urgently to put these passengers under surveillance immediately in accordance with MOHFW guidelines, “the Gauba letter said.

Meanwhile, the government is also making efforts to acquire more ventilators, personal protective equipment (PPE), and masks. Agarwal said an order for 30,000 fans was placed with Bharat Electronics Limited and another 10,000 with a public sector company.

The Ministry of Health has also started training doctors and health workers so that a uniform treatment protocol can be followed throughout the country.

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