Double digit spikes. And this has been the trend in Manipur for the last few days and from a green zone in the early part of April, the State has 459 positive cases as on June 13. The number will increase and if the trend continues, Manipur may well touch the four figure mark by the end of June. Not at all a comfortable thought. The Covid Care Centre opened at UNACCO School at Meitram with a capacity of 100 beds will certainly go a long way in easing the pressure on RIMS and JNIMS, and the plan to increase the 100 bed capacity is a welcome move. What is disturbing to note is also the report that some inmates of quarantine centres have been infected during their stay there and this should open the eyes and ears of all that the norms laid down by WHO, ICMR and the State Government should be followed diligently by all concerned while being quarantined. A tough hand is also needed at times to bring to line some of those who refuse to abide by the laid down protocols and the recent decision to pack off six inmates to the quarantine centre opened at Sajiwa Jail for violating the protocols is perfectly in line with the efforts taken up the keep the virus from spreading at the community level. More people are lined up to return and Manipur will definitely need more quarantine centres in the coming days and this is where all avenues should be studied on where such centres can come up. At the moment schools and colleges have been turned into quarantine centres but there will arise the need to look for more avenues. Why not turn the Churches, Temples and other places of worship into quarantine centres ? This is an avenue that needs serious study on the part of the Government and the bodies manning the places of worship and there should be no reason to oppose such a move for this is all about human service.
The facts now should guide all future course of decisions. All those who have tested positive are returnees, save for the lone nurse at Churachandpur who has recovered. That there is cluster spread is without a doubt with reports coming in of many from a single quarantine centre testing positive with some who tested negative in the first test but later testing positive after other inmates in the same quarantine centre were found positive. This is where the attention of the Government and all concerned should focus on. Enforce the protocols of WHO, ICMR and the State Government more stringently inside the quarantine centres. Pack off those who nonchalantly violate the laid down protocols to the quarantine centre opened at Sajiwa Jail. If need be, increase the intake capacity at the quarantine centre opened at Sajiwa Jail to bring to line those who don’t hesitate to put others at risk. This is the present state here and what is worrying is also the report that community transmission is now suspected at Guwahati especially at Pan Bazar where the focus is on the places where goods trucks load and unload the goods which may take two/three days. Inputs received at The Sangai Express suggest that the goods trucks ferrying in goods to Manipur do not go to the godowns at Pan Bazar but elsewhere, but this should not be any reason to let the guards down. Truck drivers and handymen need to strictly abide by the protocols while dispensing with their duties. The issue here can definitely take a much more worrying turn, if truckers come back positive. The Government will need to put in more stringent measures in screening the carriers of goods.