GUWAHATI: As the number of COVID-19 cases are rising alarmingly in Assam, the state government has decided to put in place a ruthless quarantine strategy for people arriving from outside.
Under “ruthless quarantine with humane heart”, the government will deny phone and social media access to people to be quarantined. Nobody, including air passengers, will be spared.
"Somebody may be occupying a big post or is an influential person. But the quarantine would be ruthless for everyone. No social media access will be allowed. Anyone coming to Assam should be prepared for the ruthless quarantine with a humane heart,” Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma told journalists on Thursday evening.
He said the number of COVID-19 cases in the state spiraled since May 4 when the Central government had allowed inter-state travel.
So far, the state recorded 203 positive cases which included four deaths. Most of the cases were reported from people who had arrived from outside the state.
The Minister said 37,000 people had already returned by road and trains while 12 lakh others were waiting to return. He said the state government’s effort would be to quarantine every individual.
For those being quarantined in hotels, the government will spend Rs 2, 000 per head per day on accommodation. A family will be considered as an individual. The government asked all District Magistrates to try and lower tariffs by negotiating with hotel managements.
Meanwhile, the government decided to tweak the standard operating procedures vis-à-vis COVID-19. No district will be marked red or orange unless the number of positive cases touches 200.
“Localities where positive cases are detected would be viewed as containment zones and areas surrounding them as buffer zones. We have been forced to resort to such steps for the well-being of people, especially those aged 65 years and above,” Sarma said.
Given the situation, he appealed to people to be extra cautious while moving out of their homes.