Amid the rising coronavirus cases in India, Maharashtra government on Monday (March 16) announced that it would "stamp" all those who have been sent to home quarantine amid the scare over the deadly virus. Notably, maximum coronavirus cases in India have been reported in Maharashtra with the total cases jumping to 39, including 3 foreign nationals.
Talking to media, Health Minister Rajesh Tope said that the government has decided to stamp the left hand of those under home quarantine in order to identify them easily. Tope added that a stamp with indelible ink will be imprinted on the left hand indicating "that person/patient is under compulsory home quarantine" till March 31. "This will help other people identify them if they break home quarantine and mix among the public during their home isolation period," he said.
The decision was taken at a meeting chaired by Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and attended by several senior health officers. The Maharashtra government said that the step is a precautionary measure after 39 cases of coronavirus were detected in the state.
"It is not a crime if somebody is infected by Covid-19. They must be given proper medical treatment and psychological support. The Epidemic Diseases Act has been invoked in the interest of the people and the district administration must create awareness on it," CM Thackeray said.
Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) officers have been ordered by the government to visit Housing societies for drive against Covid 19 outbreak in the city. It is learnt that teams of BMC officials will keep in touch with residents who have gone into isolation in their homes to ensure they complete their quarantine period of 14 days. The civic body has formed multiple health posts in all the 24 wards comprising of 1,067 teams to visit housing societies.
After conducting checks at housing societies, the corporation will now maintain a regular follow up with travellers even if they tested negative and are in self-quarantined. The BMC has procured a list of residents who recently returned from a foreign country. It has created health posts for a door-to-door campaign, and dispensaries where people can report about themselves or other suspected cases in each wards. Details of these health posts and dispensaries have been distributed in all housing societies.
The teams raise awareness in housing societies and enquire about the travel history of the residents. The BMC through these teams has managed to survey 10,027 housing societies and neighbourhoods they had visited and so far, no person has been found to be symptomatic. However, total 524 people who recently returned from a foreign trip have been under self-isolation despite being testing negative, said BMC officials.