Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Tuesday arrived at Nalbari on a day-long visit…
The Assam government has also initiated a tracking program – Assam Targeted Surveillance Programme (ATSP) – in hotspots; under this programme around 50,000 tests are expected to be conducted over the next 15 days in Guwahati.
GUWAHATI: With cases of COVID-19 increasing by the day, Assam’s Health Minister, Himanta Biswa Sarma, said that a state wide lockdown is meant only as a last resort.
The Assam government has initiated a tracking program – Assam Targeted Surveillance Programme (ATSP) – in hotspots; under this programme around 50,000 tests are expected to be conducted over the next 15 days in Guwahati.
“If lockdown is the solution, we can give it. However, after lockdown is lifted and cases keep on coming people will question the use of lockdown. When other means are available, why use the most lethal weapon? We will use lockdown only as a last resort,” Sarma said.
“After 50,000 tests, if we get a huge positive figure we will go to people with the figures and people will understand why we have locked down the state, otherwise people will no appreciate the government’s decision; especially for daily wage earners and barbers, who will be hard hit. While ordering a three-week lockdown earlier, the objective was to prevent India from becoming another Italy. Only if it happens that Assam is becoming like Delhi or Mumbai then we will consider a lockdown.”
Under the ATSP programme, the state has identified probable sources of transmission – truck parking lots and unloading bays including railway goods yards/godowns, frontline district officials, hotel staff and family members of people released from institutional quarantine. Under this programme, officials in the police, transport, and administrative departments besides healthcare workers will also be “screened and tested regularly.”
Sarma said that by June 20, 25,000 people from Kerala will come to Assam. Total positive cases in Assam stands at 4,605.
Meanwhile, traders in Guwahati have asked the trading community to open shops by 9 am and close them by 5pm on week days.
“Due to sudden increase in number of positive cases we ask the Business establishments in Mamrup (Metro) to open from 9 AM to 5 PM from Monday to Saturday. Sunday will be closed,” said MP Jain, President, Kamrup Chamber of Commerce.
“Please advise your marketing executives and others visiting your business premises for promoting products over call or do video conferencing thus reducing visits. These guidelines should be strictly followed till 30th June 2020,” Jain added.
News Source The Economic Times