Ladakh allows inhabitants to return home
Arrival from Lakhanpur nearing 18,000
JAMMU, May 2: A Kashmiri man from Pulwama district today tested positive for COVID-19 in Samba district where he had returned recently taking tally of Jammu region to 61 and active cases to nine while an Iran-returned female pilgrim in Kargil district in the Union Territory of Ladakh was also found Corona positive. Ladakh’s tally has now gone up to 23.
The Union Territory of Ladakh today allowed movement of its inhabitants into the UT but with conditions that those travelling in `regulated movement’ will have to go 14-day home quarantine while others who reached without permission from the Nodal Officers will be treated as part of `unregulated movement’ and will have to undergo 14-day institutional quarantine.
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Meanwhile, there was no let up in influx of the J&K inhabitants at Lakhanpur with at least 3300 more people from Himachal Pradesh and Punjab entered the Union Territory today and were sent by the district administration either to their respective district headquarters or in Kathua and Samba districts for administrative quarantine.
The Ladakh UT administration also transported its 355 stranded persons to Leh and Kargil districts from here.
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A 60-year old Kashmiri man, a resident of village Sandipora in Pulwama district, who had another house at village Channi Kartholi in Sarore area of Bari Brahamana in Samba district for winter stay, had returned from Pulwama by taking lift in a tanker on April 29 and was under administrative quarantine at a resort in Ghagwal, tested positive for COVID-19 today. Yesterday, two truck drivers from Samba, who had travel history to New Delhi and Mumbai, were tested Corona positive.
SSP Samba Shakti Pathak and Additional SP Faisal Qureshi rushed to the quarantine centre and got the Corona positive patient shifted to the Chest Diseases Hospital Bakshi Nagar. He was asymptomatic.
Sources said the Corona positive person is a resident of Sandipora, Pulwama and his son is working in Police Department posted as a constable in DPL Pulwama. He was with his son and had returned to his second house in Samba taking lift in a tanker on April 29.
On his arrival, he was shifted to quarantine centre.
With this, Samba district’s total cases have gone up to seven and active cases to three as four others have been treated and discharged.
The Microbiology Department of Government Medical College (GMC) Jammu under the supervision of HoD Dr Shashi S Sudan today conducted an all time high 698 Corona tests and only one of them was positive.
With today’s positive case, total number of Corona positive cases in Jammu region have gone up to 61 and active cases to nine as 51 patients have recovered while there was one death.
A woman, who had recently been airlifted to Kargil from Jaisalmer in Rajasthan and had earlier returning from pilgrimage in Iran, was today tested positive for COVID-19.
The 52-year old woman hailed from village Kaksar in Kargil district and was on 14-day institutional quarantine after being evacuated from Jaisalmer where she was stranded along with other pilgrims of Ladakh who had been airlifted from Iran. The woman had been in quarantine centre at Jaisalmer for over a month and was tested negative thrice there.
However, on her return, the authorities took her sample during institutional quarantine and she was tested positive for Coronavirus. She was asymptomatic and her condition was also normal.
Immediately thereafter, the woman was shifted from the quarantine centre and admitted in the COVID hospital at Kargil.
With this, Ladakh UT’s total Corona cases have reached 23, 17 of whom have been treated and discharged leaving six active cases-two in Leh district and four in Kargil.
Condition of all six Corona positive cases in Ladakh is stable, sources said, adding that reports of 74 samples were received today and 73 of them were negative.
An official order issued by the UT of Ladakh said the stranded persons will be allowed to move towards Ladakh after prior permission of the Nodal Officers appointed for the purpose and all those entering without permission (of the Nodal Officers) will be subjected to institutional quarantine of 14 days at the entry point.
“Stranded persons desirous of travelling to Ladakh must get in touch with the respective Nodal Officers assigned for the States and register themselves on the “Ladakh Connect App’ at connect.ladakh.gov.in. Such stranded persons may form groups on their own or request the Nodal Officers to form groups for organizing their movement. Each group shouldn’t be more than 25 people, who will be allowed to travel in a single bus following norms of social distancing and taking other safety/health precautions,” the Government order said.
However, it added, the patients who are seriously ill or suffering from multiple diseases and can’t travel by road must apply with the concerned Liaison Officer with medical certificate for transportation by air travel, which will be contingent on availability.
While facilitating movement of stranded persons, the Government will give priority to patients, elderly persons, minor students and escorts with the patients.
“Stranded persons travelling in the buses having movement passes will be designated as `regulated travelers’ and they will be allowed to proceed to their home/destinations and will be put under home quarantine for 14 days along with their family members by the respective district administration,” the UT order said but added that inbound persons found symptomatic during medical screening will be subjected to institutional quarantine along with their fellow passengers.
The stranded people coming from Red Zones will also have to go mandatory institutional quarantine of 14 days on their arrival. The UT administration has asked the Nodal Officers to ensure that the passengers from Red Zones aren’t mixed with passengers from Orange and Green Zones in the same bus. However, in case, there is any mix-up, all passengers of such bus will have to undergo institutional quarantine for 14 days.
However, all the passengers travelling in regulated movement and not coming from Red Zone will be allowed to go home with 14-day quarantine.
“The UT Nodal Officer will also regulate outward movement of stranded persons from Ladakh to their own States. The stranded migrant workers desirous of moving outside Ladakh can approach the Nodal Officer through the Deputy Commissioners of Leh or Kargil depending on their location. The Nodal Officer will inform the destination State and J&K of such movement in advance,” the order said.
It added that the respective Deputy Commissioners of Leh and Kargil will be responsible for transit, receiving, quarantining and putting in place the testing/screening facilities for the arriving persons of their respective districts.
The UT administration of Ladakh has appointed Saugat Biswas, Divisional Commissioner as the Nodal Officer and overall Incharge for coordinating movement for stranded persons from all States.
Meanwhile, 355 persons of Ladakh including students stranded in Jammu were today cleared for Leh and Kargil districts from here in the presence of two SPs from Ladakh including Gourav Mahajan and Mohammad Rafi.
Mahajan told the Excelsior that 145 persons left in five buses for Leh and 210 in seven buses for Kargil district.
The UT Ladakh administration has deputed Mahajan and Rafi to Jammu to facilitate movement of stranded persons of Ladakh back to their districts.
More stranded persons of Ladakh here will also be cleared shortly.
Meanwhile, at least 3300 more stranded persons entered Jammu and Kashmir from Lakhanpur, the gateway to J&K, from Himachal Pradesh and Punjab today taking total number of arrivals since April 25 to over 18,000
Deputy Commissioner Kathua OP Bhagat told the Excelsior that till last night, 15,116 J&K inhabitants had entered the UT since April 25 when the movement of students, workers and others was allowed.
Majority of people have arrived from Himachal Pradesh (11062) and Punjab (3399) till last evening.
All the persons entering J&K are being sent for institutional quarantine of 14 days either at their home districts or Kathua and Samba.