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Will test all ministers, as one came in contact with a Covid-positive person recently: CM

Wednesday, Jul 15, 2020 12:15 [IST]

Last Update: Wednesday, Jul 15, 2020 06:35 [IST]

Will test all ministers, as one came in contact with a Covid-positive person recently: CM

PANKAJ DHUNGEL
GANGTOK: With the State imposing lockdown in Pakyong and Rongli subdivision, Chief Minister P.S. Golay has maintained that a complete lockdown of entire Sikkim is not required at the moment.
Addressing the Student's Rights Day programme at Manan Kendra here on Tuesday, the CM asserted on compulsory Covid testing of all the ministers, since one minister came in contact with a Covid positive patient recently. “It appears that a Covid-positive patient from Rongli had recently come in contact with our Rural Development minister Sonam Lama and also met the Rural Development secretary. Hence, we have taken a decision on conducting tests on all our ministers and everyone who came in contact with them.”
Sharing details of the State task force meeting held earlier in the day, the Chief Minister said: “There was widespread suggestion on complete lockdown, but we cannot take such a decision that would hamper the economic progress of the State. A complete lockdown will have an adverse effect, so we have made consideration to impose lockdown in Pakyong and Rongli subdivisions only, which now has community spread from the GREF camp towards Rongli and has spread among police and medical personnel locally.”
Earlier, the Chief Minister convened an emergency meeting of the State task force to discuss the latest spike in the number of Covid-19 cases in Rongli subdivision and the immediate measures to be taken, an IPR release informs.
At the outset, chief secretary S.C. Gupta apprised the house of the latest developments in the last 24 hours. He informed that in Rongli and Pakyong subdivisions, a few cases have been detected in the community, despite the best efforts of the State government.  He said that the State will now go for 100% testing of each person who enters Sikkim at the entry point, the IPR release informs.
After hearing all the suggestions placed in the meeting, the Chief Minister directed that the State administration should strictly assess and monitor the quarantine facilities of Army and paramilitary forces including GREF. He called for immediate upgradation of quarantine facilities in Rongli and Pakyong subdivisions, and to consider home quarantine option to manage the increase in the number of cases, with strict orders for compliance.
Golay called for strict vigilance of pharmaceutical companies and ensure that all guidelines are strictly followed.  He also called for limiting the number of returnees from other States, as well as complete restriction on inter-district movement of vehicles for at least fifteen days. He also called for restriction of intra-district movement to ensure limited movement, the IPR release informs.
The Chief Minister directed for enforcement of complete lockdown in Rongli and Pakyong subdivisions from 6 am of July 15 to contain further spread. He also directed the administration to ensure that all the guidelines are adhered to in letter and spirit. He further called for immediate restriction on the movement of persons into the official residences of all the ministers and MLAs.
He further called for immediate restriction on the return of employees and workers of all private companies for the next fifteen days. However, Central government employees should be allowed to enter with thorough screening and testing, the IPR release adds.
The Chief Minister suggested for augmenting the Police force by deploying Forest guards and local village guards, who will be under the disposal of the concerned SP.
The meeting concluded with the decision to hold another review meeting in the next three days.

Sikkim at a Glance

  • Area: 7096 Sq Kms
  • Capital: Gangtok
  • Altitude: 5,840 ft
  • Population: 6.10 Lakhs
  • Topography: Hilly terrain elevation from 600 to over 28,509 ft above sea level
  • Climate:
  • Summer: Min- 13°C - Max 21°C
  • Winter: Min- 0.48°C - Max 13°C
  • Rainfall: 325 cms per annum
  • Language Spoken: Nepali, Bhutia, Lepcha, Tibetan, English, Hindi