Buses parked at a depot amid lockdown in Prayagraj on Tuesday. (Photo by Ritesh Shukla)
The number of positive novel coronavirus cases in UP rose to 37 on Tuesday as tests confirmed four more patients have the infection – three in Noida, and the first in Shamli district.
Till date, 11 cases have been reported from Noida — the most in the state — eight each from Agra and Lucknow, three from Ghaziabad, and one each from the districts of Lakhimpur Kheri, Moradabad, Varanasi, Kanpur, Jaunpur, Pilibhit and Shamli.
Eleven people — seven from Agra, two from Ghaziabad, one from Noida and one from Lucknow — have recovered from the infection, and have been discharged from hospitals.
While two of the patients in Noida did not have travel history to coronavirus-affected countries, the third had returned from South Africa earlier this month.
“Two persons that were found positive are a couple, and had not traveled to a corona-affected country,” said Gautam Buddh Nagar CMO Dr Anurag Bhargava. “Prima facie, it appears that they contracted it through a client who, in turn, had traveled to the United Kingdom. One other resident, who had traveled to South Africa, was also found positive. We have sealed the residential colony, and are in the process of screening and sanitisation.”
Officials said 60 people have been put under surveillance for allegedly coming into contact with the three, and 65 extra samples had been sent for testing. At present, 148 people in the region are under observation in four isolation wards.
The patient in Shamli is a 33-year-old man who was quarantined at home after returning from Dubai on March 15.
After he started complaining of a sore throat, his samples were sent to the King George Medical University (KGMU) here. He has been admitted to the district hospital, and efforts are being made to identify his contacts.
Meanwhile, the residential society where the Noida couple live was sealed, and sanitised by the civic body. Health officials also carried out door-to-door screening there, and in areas near the third patient’s home in Greater Noida.
Residents were asked to remain indoors, but many panicked following Narendra Modi’s announcement that the entire country would be locked down till April 14. “We are being impacted on several levels,” said a person who lives in the couple’s housing colony. “Firstly, there was a lockdown in the district, following which it [residential complex] was sealed. After the fresh announcement, we all went to our local store in the colony but things are running out. Since we can’t step out, we don’t even know if things will get delivered inside. There is a lot of chaos at present.”
Residents’ associations in the region are trying to contact the administration to devise a supply chain to ensure essential items are delivered on time.
In Lucknow, KGMU officials said in the last 24 hours 53 samples had been tested at the hospital, out of which 52 were found to be negative.
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