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Two slums in Calcutta fully sealed

Over 20 dwellers have tested positive for Covid-19 in the past few days
Barricades set up outside a locality, identified as a Covid-19 containment zone, in Calcutta on Monday.

Our Special Correspondent   |   Calcutta   |   Published 24.07.20, 01:56 AM

Two slums adjacent to Lake Gardens and Jodhpur Park in south Calcutta have been completely sealed after more than 20 people tested positive for Covid-19 in the past few days.

The slums, Gobindapur and 52 No., are along the rail tracks beside Gobindapur Road that connects Rahim Ostagar Road in the east and Prince Anwar Shah Road in the west.

The two slums have more than 9,000 residents and both have been sanitised.

A camp has been set up at a local club as several residents have been complaining of fever.

Standalone shops and small markets inside both slums have been shut and entry/exit points sealed. Cops have been posted to prevent any sort of movement except for emergencies.

On Thursday, a team of pathologists collected swab samples from 100 people. In the next two days, swab samples of at least 200 more will be collected, a civic official said.

“Several residents from the slums have been stepping out of their homes for daily work. Despite repeated requests they have been slack about following distancing rules,” Ratan Dey, the local ward coordinator, said.

 “Once the screening is over and tests results are out, we will make arrangements to quarantine those who test positive.”

An officer of Lake police station said the bulk of the senior citizens in Lake Gardens, Golf Green, Jodhpur Park, Selimpur and Dhakuria depend on these slums for the supply of drivers, guards and helps. “We have sealed all entry and exit points.”

Several people in these slums have complained of fever and cough in the past few days, a health department official said. “We found that the infection had spread to several members of a family and many were asymptomatic,” the official said.

Many such asymptomatic people had visited several apartments in the past few days for work. A contact-tracing list is being prepared, the official said.

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