New Delhi: Around 200 people from the markaz (headquarters) of Tablighi Jamaat — a society for spreading faith — were rushed to different hospitals of the city on the suspicion of being infected with the novel coronavirus on the intervening night of March 29 and 30. One hundred and six of them have been admitted at Lok Nayak Hospital, while 60 have been taken to Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality Hospital after they allegedly exhibited the symptoms of COVID-19 infection.
“We have so far admitted 106 suspects, who are lodged in the isolation ward. Their saliva and mucous samples are being examined. We will confirm anything once the reports come,” an official at the Lok Nayak Hospital told NewsClick.
Senior officials at Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality Hospital could not be reached for comments.
After a 64-year-old man from Tamil Nadu died in the hospital, the Delhi Police has cordoned off Nizamuddin, where the markaz is located. However, the cause of death is unknown as the body has been sent for post mortem.
The police have deployed drones to keep a strict check on the implementation of the lockdown. Patrolling has also been intensified in the area to ensure everyone remains indoors.
Sources in the city police said around 1,000 people are there in the markaz building who have been advised self-quarantine. They added that around 100 of them are foreigners belonging to 15 different countries, some of which have been badly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The rest are Indians. They are said to be suffering from fever and cough.
In addition, around 2,000 people in the area have also been asked to say inside their houses as part of self-quarantine. A few of them, the sources added, have also been shifted to some isolated regions of the national capital.
Delhi has so far reported 72 corona virus positive cases, of which two have died.
The Delhi government has said that the doctors who are treating COVID-19 infected patients will be accommodated at a five-star hotel (Hotel Lalit) in the national capital at the government’s expense.
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“It has been decided that doctors working on COVID-19 duty at LNJP Hospital and GB Pant Hospital would be provided accommodation at Hotel Lalit and the payment of the same shall be borne by the Delhi government,” said an order dated March 29 issued by the Delhi health department.
“Doctors are on the frontlines of the battle against Coronavirus. All doctors serving in Delhi government’s Lok Nayak Hospital and GB Pant Hospital on COVID-19 duty will now be housed in Hotel Lalit. #DelhiFightsCorona,” the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) tweeted on March 30.
All necessary arrangements to make 100 rooms in the plush hotel at Barakhamba Road — according to the order — will be made by the district magistrate of New Delhi.
The Arvind Kejriwal-led government in the city has designated LNJP Hospital, GB Pant Hospital and other few hospitals for treatment of COVID-19 infected patients, and doctors here are deployed round-the-clock in shifts for attending the positive or suspected cases of COVID-19.
Meanwhile, Darul Uloom Deoband, Uttar Pradesh, the biggest Islamic seminary in the country, has offered one of its grand buildings to the state government to be used as isolation centre.
In addition, Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind, a prominent Muslim body, too, has offered its premises under its control in various parts of the country to be used as isolation and quarantine centres amid the COVID-19 outbreak on March 30.
Jamiat General Secretary Maulana Mahmood Madani, in a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, offered his organisation's premises for isolation and quarantine centres that would be able to accommodate approximately 10,000 people. He also requested the PM to direct the concerned authorities to let Jamiat know of their requirements wherever and whenever the need arises.
“On behalf of my organisation Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind, its more than 12 million members, and the countrywide state and district level network, allow me to express our appreciation and gratitude for your commitment and effort to overcome COVID-19,” said the letter as reported by PTI.
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“We have activated all our state and district units to offer relief to the people in need through thousands of locally organised disaster management and relief committees of civilian volunteers,” he said according to the news agency.
They are actively distributing food and items of basic need to the affected population, he added. “It has come to our knowledge that the emerging circumstances might require quarantining of a large number of people to contain the spread of coronavirus because of migration of large numbers from cities to villages,” he said.
“We would like to offer the premises under control of our network in various parts of the country. On a rough estimate, we can voluntarily accommodate up to 10,000 people,” he added.
The country witnessed a slower rise of 23% over the past 48 hours in the confirmed COVID-19 cases. The latest data released by the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare shows a total of 1,071 cases so far. In the previous 48-hour-period, the cases had risen by 35% to 871. The number of active cases rose 22% over the same period to 942. Over the past 24 hours, the national case count has gone up by 15%.
Active cases exclude deaths and recoveries from the list of confirmed cases.
With over 200 positive cases, Kerala has the highest active cases followed by Maharashtra where the total number of cases stand at over 190.
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