Mumbai: Cop tests COVID-19 positive, neighbours sent to quarantine, not kin

Updated: Jun 30, 2020, 09:33 IST | Samiullah Khan | Mumbai

Civic body says cop's mother and father were kept in home quarantine as they are elderly; neighbours complain of unhygienic conditions at the quarantine facility

The MHB facility where the neighbours have been quarantined
The MHB facility where the neighbours have been quarantined

The BMC's decision to isolate the neighbours of a COVID-19 positive police constable and not her parents has bewildered one of the quarantined people. The man has alleged that the facility is poorly maintained, and asked why weren't they allowed to home-quarantine.

On June 26, a 32-year-old woman constable of the Malvani police station tested positive for the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19). She was admitted to the quarantine centre for police at Marol. The BMC then sent 15 neighbours to a quarantine facility three days ago, but they left the constable's parents at home.

Amarnath Dubey, an autorickshaw driver who is at the MHB school quarantine centre along with the seven members of his family, said he has a ground plus one floor house with two separate toilets, and that they could have maintained physical distance at home. He alleged that they requested the BMC to let them home-quarantine like the constable's parents, but they didn't agree.

He alleged that the condition of the quarantine centre is very bad. "There is no one to clean the facility and we don't even know if the bed sheets were changed after the people who were here earlier left."

"More than 50 people are currently at the centre and are forced to use the common toilet, which is dirty all the time. People may fall ill just because of the unhygienic condition of the facility," he added.

A BMC health official told mid-day that a recent guideline for the slum pockets states that all close contacts must be quarantined, and so the 15 neighbours of the constable were sent to the MHB facility. "There is a huge chance that they [neighbours] might have come in contact with the affected person," the official said.

"The constable's parents have no symptoms. Also, her father is handicapped so he would not have been able to move without any support [at the facility]. Her mother is taking care of him. So, it was not appropriate to send them to the quarantine centre. Our officials visit them regularly," he added.
The official refused to comment on the possibility of letting neighbours home-quarantine.

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