Following the positive case of Coronavirus in neighbouring Karimganj district, the Hailakandi district administration has sealed the inter-district borders with Karimganj and Cachar in the evening on Tuesday.
Movement of people and vehicles have been completely stopped except the vehicles carrying essential commodities and in emergency services.
Superintendent of Police, Pabindra Kumar Nath said the sealing of inter-district borders have been taken to ensure health security of the people in view of detection of positive case of Coronavirus in adjoining district.
Nath said steps have already been taken to seal all the border roads with neighbouring Mizoram as some persons sneaked into Assam.
Following the detection of a positive COVID-19 case in Karimganj district, Deputy Commissioner, Hailakandi, Keerthi Jalli said, “This is not a drill anymore. Complete lockdown measures in Hailakandi. Severe punishments for violators.”
The administration has stepped up to enforce total lockdown in the district. Hailakandi and other towns wore a deserted look with a eerie silence prevailing.
Mobile miking has reached a feverish pitch across the length and breadth of the district and also over the fixed loud speakers asking the people to remain indoors to prevent the virus from spreading further. It also warned of stringent action against those violating the lockdown guidelines.
The district police have seized 63 numbers of vehicles and bikes and has arrested 19 persons for violation of the lockdown, including registration of five numbers of cases. Total fine realised by way of penalties is Rs 19,000.
Following the circulation of an unsigned letter with names of several persons belonging to Tabliqui Jamat who went to Nizamuddin in New Delhi for a religious congregation and entering into Hailakandi went viral in the social media, alarm bells started ringing in.
Responding quickly the administration made it clear that 10 numbers of persons, who were part of Tabliqui Jamat, and returned to Hailakandi on March 15 have been put under extended home quarantine. Another nine persons who were not part of Tabliqui Jamat had returned on March 9. “All this persons have no symptoms of COVID-19. However, we are taking no chances and they are being monitored and kept under observation. There is no reason to panic,” said an official.
1,442 persons have been kept under home quarantine.
The administration is ensuring unhindered flow of essential commodities through the retail fair price shops and licensed groceries. Magistrates have been deployed to check price rise and prevent hoarding. Daily stock position of essential commodities in open market along with wholesale and retail price of essential commodities is being circulated and prominently displayed in the grocery shops. Arrangement is being made to provide door-to-door delivery of vegetables in several places across the district.
Meanwhile, the administration has asked the 17 numbers of gaon panchayat samabai samittees to lift the additional allocation of rice under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAY)from the FCI godown at Lala and to start distribution to the beneficiaries through the 918 numbers of fair price shops with immediate effect. Total allocation of rice for April is 28836.90 quintals. Each beneficiary will get 5 kg rice each per month free of cost.
“Following receipt of additional allocation of rice under PMGKAY, no one will get hungry,” Assistant Director, Food Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs, Ganesh Choudhury said, adding, “This will go a long way in restraining a situation of panic in the unprecedented times due to Coronavirus outbreak.”