About 800 people didn’t disclose travel history on time: DC Srinagar

(Photo via arrangement)

Abid Bashir

Srinagar (NVI): The Covid-19 situation in Kashmir would have been different, had the 800 people revealed their travel history on time, the Srinagar Deputy Commissioner said today while appealing people in the Valley to follow lockdown guidelines.

“Let me tell you that some 800 people who had travel history of outside J&K didn’t come forward and instead preferred to hide their travel history. But with our robust contact tracing, all of them have been traced one by one,” he said.

“Had they come forward earlier, perhaps the situation would not have been same we are in today. One positive Covid case can affect up to 100 persons and then there becomes a chain,” said DC Shahid Iqbal Chaudhary, while addressing a press conference here.

He said that the next three to four days are crucial as the government would see in which direction things would go after which a call will be taken whether the situation is “alarming.”

There has been a steep rise in the positive Covid cases in J&K in the past 24 hours. On Wednesday 33 cases were tested positive in J&K of which 30 belonged to Kashmir alone and today, 24 more tested positive, all of them again from Kashmir.

During the meeting, the DC also announced that the lockdown will be intensified across Srinagar from tomorrow (Friday), and the district has been divided into 25 zones. 5000 government officials will be on the ground and cover each zone to address the issues of people in their respective areas, he said. Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) was also present.

He said given the fact that Srinagar is a congested city, the administration has declared 14 red zones.  “All the entry points in these areas have been sealed barring a few which are meant to facilitate employees on essential duty and to ensure supply of essentials,” the DC Srinagar said.

The DC urged religious leaders and elders of every locality to persuade people not to venture out and to adhere to the guidelines laid by the government that are aimed at preventing the spread of the pandemic.

He also made an appeal to the government employees who are posted out of Srinagar to stay in the areas where they are posted. He assured the people that there was no shortage of life-saving drugs as 70 per cent district has been covered by the Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution department under “ration at door steps program” so far and that the process is still on.

“We have life saving drugs for five to six weeks in Kashmir and almost every alternate day, special aircraft lands in Srinagar with life saving and other drugs,” he said.

The DC said that more than 11,000 non-local labourers who are in Kashmir are being provided with free food.

Speaking on the occasion, SSP Srinagar Dr Haseeb Mughal urged people to cooperate with the policemen who are deployed round the clock on roads and streets of Srinagar just for the safety of people. “This time, it’s not a fight against militancy or that the police force is not dealing with any law and order issue,” he said.

“This lockdown is totally different from the previous ones but people here follow same old habit of coming out of their homes in the evening in large numbers, when deployment is thinned down.”

He also urged people not to hide their travel history. “It’s a social issue and we have to collectively deal with it,” the SSP Srinagar said. He said that even on Shab-e-Baraat eve (on Wednesday night), police had to register four FIRs against those who insisted on praying in the mosques. “This shouldn’t happen,” he said.