KOTTAYAM: Forming another medium community cluster of Covid -19 in Kottayam district, 45 of 67 people associated with a private vegetable market at Ettumanoor, who were subjected to antigen testing, tested positive for the disease on Monday. The second medium Covid cluster, after the one at Changanassery market, was identified by the Health Department authorities in the massive testing conducted as part of intensified surveillance in markets across the district. Around 80 persons, mostly migrant labourers, are working in this wholesale-cum-retail market and the testing will continue on Tuesday as well. “Measures have to be tightened to contain the spread of the virus,” said Dr Vyas Sukumaran, district project manager, National Health Mission.
Having 45 persons tested positive for the disease, Health Department authorities are expecting extensive contacts for them and hence the virus might have escalated to more areas as well. “Earlier, the wholesale market was closed after random testing. However, some vendors from nearby areas were purchasing vegetables from the retail market. Hence, chances are high for spreading the disease to nearby areas like Peroor, Kidangoor and other parts of Ettumanoor,” said an official. Following this, authorities have temporarily closed the market.
Meanwhile, there were allegations that the market authorities failed to comply with Covid preventive guidelines, which led to the spread of the disease. Though two persons at Ettumanoor fish market were confirmed to have contracted the disease a few days ago, no more new cases emerged in the follow-up tests. “We have conducted follow-up tests among more than 100 people, including persons associated with the fish market and places near it. But, no more cases were found after that. However, the situation turned different in the vegetable market,” said George Pullatt, former chairman, Ettumanoor municipality.
Kondotty turning into a large community cluster, says CM
Malappuram: Kondotty municipality is developing as a large community cluster in Malappuram district, said Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. He was speaking at the daily Covid-19 briefing in Thiruvananthapuram on Monday. He also said several people associated with the Kondotty fish market and their family members have tested positive for the disease.