BHOPAL: Over a dozen villagers, whose throat and nasal swab samples were not taken for testing, have been declared positive for the deadly novel coronavirus in Dhar district of Madhya Pradesh. A probe has been ordered by the Dhar district administration into the lapse.
Two contractual employees, who had gone to the Tana village in Nisarpur block of Dhar district on Sept 8 to test the villagers for the deadly viral infection, have been sacked. Health workers, Bachchan Mujalda and the lab technician Gumansingh Chouhan, had gone to Tana village to collect samples of villagers for Covid-19 testing. They took the nasal and throat swab samples of four villagers.
Reports said other villagers either refused to give their samples or went out of the village to avoid giving samples. The two returned with tubes bearing samples of 19 villagers. The sample collections were mentioned in a register maintained by the village sarpanch and panchayat secretary. The 19 sample tubes were sent for RT-PCR test at a laboratory in adjoining Indore.
A few days later, the reports of 17 out of the 19 samples were out, all of which were Covid positive. While the reports pertained to samples of two of the four persons whose swab samples were actually taken, the 15 other positive reports pertained to those villagers who had not given their samples.
Harjit Mujalde was among the 15 persons tested positive, though his swab samples were not taken. “I was not present in my village that day, so my samples were not taken. How can I be found Covid-19 positive?” Dhar collector Alok Singh said the contractual health workers were sacked and a preliminary probe has revealed a lapse on their part.
The two health workers have blamed the testing lab in Indore for the lapse. “We’ve been facing the ire of villagers, who allege they are being wrongly tested positive,” said one of them. “We wanted to check whether the lab is actually testing the samples correctly. ”