All eyes now on Thangmeiband, Jiribam. COVID-19 everywhere
Thangmeiband, Lilong, Churachandpur, Ukhrul, Jiribam and again Thangmeiband. Not exactly a case of the virus coming back to the starting point, but more a case of how COVID-19 has been running up and down the corridors of Manipur in gay abandon. This in brief is the rough coronavirus map that may be understood while referring to Manipur. A single case at the fag end of March to 1345 cases in July now and there has been no let down in the spread of the virus. In between there have been many questions, which have not been answered and this is what is hard to accept. Till date there has been no satisfactory answer on how 25 inmates of different quarantine centres in Ukhrul were first declared negative, then positive and again on re-test found 19 out of 24 of the said 25 persons negative. All this came to light within a span of 24 hours, the first goof up on June 28 and the second ‘correction’ on June 29. Ukhrul was again in the news on July 2, when a young girl was declared positive after discharge following her quarantine period. That this happened in a place like Ukhrul where the Tangkhul Naga Long and its affiliated bodies have set an example of facing the virus by making all returnees spend 28 days in quarantine, first in institutional quarantine centres for 14 days and another 14 days in village level quarantine centres is what is flummoxing. Making things all that more unacceptable is the fact that till date no official explanation on how the goof up occurred has come forth. This is certainly not the way that one expects the Government and the health authority to deal with the global pandemic which has already claimed thousands of lives.
In the beginning it was Churachandpur which led the table of infection and it was not only the number of infection which propelled the district to the news but for other reasons such as the seeming lack of discipline demonstrated by some inmates of a quarantine centre. Other than this, Churachandpur district again grabbed everyone’s attention when a nurse, with no travel history, tested positive. Fortunately this did not lead to widespread infection as the said nurse had shown remarkable self discipline and concern for others in not leaving her work station at all during the period she was on duty and not going back home even after her ‘office hour.’ The good news is, the said nurse has recovered and if at all there is a lesson to be learnt here, it is that flattening the curve or breaking the chain is the responsibility of everyone. So from Churachandpur and Ukhrul, the focus of all must now be on Thangmeiband, where a young child was found positive after testing negative earlier. Contact tracing is on and from the little information that has been received at the press here, it is understood that a number of people who came into contact with the little child have been identified and quarantined for testing. Focus of the people is also on Jiribam where a number of police and VDF personnel have been found positive from a single case of an ASI testing positive. A clear indication that the virus can spread easily. And this is what is worrying and all the more reason why there should be no loss of concentration in the efforts taken up to keep the virus from spreading further.