Cong MLA put put under home quarantine after visit to Jaipur

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The MLA has to stay in isolation for 14 days. (Representational Image)

A Congress MLA was put under home quarantine by health officials in Danta of Banaskantha district on Thursday morning, two days after he had returned from Jaipur in Rajasthan. All 68 MLAs of Gujarat Congress had stayed at a resort in Jaipur for 10 days during the MLAs crisis related to Rajya Sabha polls earlier scheduled on March 26, which were indefinitely postponed in view of the coronavirus pandemic.

Kantibhai Kharadi (48), an MLA of Gujarat Congress from Danta, stays with four other family members in Danta. He had showed his medical certificate to health officials on Thursday, stating that he had undergone a medical check-up two days ago and that he is not exhibiting any symptoms of COVID-19.

"I had undergone a medical test in Jaipur right before I left for Gujarat and my vitals were normal. I did not show any symptoms of coronavirus and yet on Thursday morning, I saw a notice put up by the health department outside my house. The notice stated that the house is under quarantine and no one should visit it. I showed them my medical certificate but they told me that I must stay at home in isolation for 14 days. I don't know understand why the administration has taken such a step when there are seven MLAs in Banaskantha and their homes haven't been quarantined," said Kharadi.

Along with 67 other MLAs of Gujarat Congress, Kharadi had shifted to a resort in Jaipur on March 17. As many as five MLAs of the party had resigned from the Gujarat Assembly ahead of the now postponed Rajya Sabha elections. The Gujarat Congress MLAs were joined in by Congress MLAs and volunteers in Rajasthan, and a total of 100 persons lived in the resort for 10 days.

Speaking to The Indian Express, Banaskantha Collector Sandip Sangle said, "Health officials conducted a survey of the residents who have had recent travel history outside India or Gujarat. As a precautionary step, when it was found that the concerned MLA had stayed in Jaipur for 10 days, his house was put under quarantine. However, we verified the information and realised that the MLA's results had turned out to be negative and he had procured a health certificate. Now, we are verifying the health status of his family members and if they, too, fall in the negative domain, then the quarantine status might be removed."

Meanwhile, Gujarat Congress claimed that none of their 68 MLAs were put under quarantine after the Jaipur visit.

Leader of Opposition Paresh Dhanani, Gujarat Congress, told this newspaper, "None of our MLAs are under quarantine as we had a medical team with us in the resort. Already, all 68 of us were in isolation state as no other person was allowed inside the resort. Before leaving for Gujarat, all of us underwent tests and procured our medical certificates."