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People cross border illegally on foot, raise health concern

Illegal border crossing by walking has become the biggest concern for the officers monitoring the Kerala- Tamil Nadu border at Parassala in the wake of the Covid-19 spread.

Published: 21st June 2020 07:14 AM  |   Last Updated: 21st June 2020 07:14 AM   |  A+A-

coronavirus sample testing

Representational image. (Photo | PTI)

By Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Illegal border crossing by walking has become the biggest concern for the officers monitoring the Kerala- Tamil Nadu border at Parassala in the wake of the Covid-19 spread. Several people are feared to have sneaked into the state through the minor roads numbering around hundred on the 40 km-long border.The government has set up checking points on 13 roads besides Inchivila, the check-post on the NH connecting both the states. Passengers of all vehicles passing through these points are subjected to thermal scanning.

“But there are people who walk into the state skipping the scanning. Sometimes they take a short deviation from the checking point or come through the minor roads which do not have a checking point,” said C K Hareendran, Parassala MLA.On Friday, he had convened an official meeting to devise ways to check the illegal entry. “A slew of measures have been planned, including surveillance by local-level vigilance committees and awareness programmes,” he told TNIE.

The vigilance committees will include members of the local self-government, police and revenue departments. Patrolling teams would be formed with members of the government’s volunteer programme. “The idea is to deploy some 200 persons for the surveillance. Besides, the police will start mike announcements on the health and legal consequences of illegal crossing and aiding the offenders,” he said.
Curbs on border crossing is a sensitive issue as people living in border areas of both states are heavily dependent on the other state.

“The border line is a technical demarcation. People have to cross the border, sometimes several times a day, for buying groceries or visiting hospitals. Close relatives would be living on either side. Hence our aim is to minimise difficulties for the people without compromising safety,” he said.Recently, three people who had come from Tamil Nadu were tested positive for the pandemic. They had sneaked into the border and the disease was identified when they sought treatment at the community health centre at Vellarada.



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