Shopian, April 24 (GNS): District Administration Shopian on Friday appealed people not to panic, underlining that the situation was under control as the COVID-19 cases are restricted to “few households” and disease spread “very limited.”
Addressing a presser, Deputy Commissioner Shopian Chaudhary Mohammad Yasin announced designation of special “red zone officer” and strengthening of security deployment despite “specific geography and terrain” of the Heerpora, one of the hotspots in entire Valley.
“We will maintain focus in Heerpora as long as entire population is not tested. The cases are limited to a single Mohalla and that too in 5 to 6 households,” Yasin said, according to Global News Service.
“All cases are either from a family or their immediate relations. As per our assessment, they have frequently visited each other during the lockdown. Their children have been visiting each other regularly. However we are confident and the spread is very limited to only few families,” he said, adding, “Sampling in Heerpora have been completed and almost 50% have been completed in adjacent buffer zones.”
He said special officer has been designated as an officer of the Red Zone. “All the areas leading in and out of the Red Zones have been effectively sealed”.
“This is a difficult task for us given the specific geography and terrain of Heerpora. Here we have widespread orchards on both sides beside there is Ranbi Ara Nallah. There are reports that some people move out and as such we have strengthened the deployment (of police and paramilitary forces). In fact, we have made deployment along Nallah as well.”
There were originally eight Red Zone areas in the south Kashmir district but two of them have been converted into ‘orange zones.’
“There are now six Red Zone areas. Sedow and Palpora have been declared orange because primary contacts there have come to be negative on testing.”
As regards addressing panic, he stressed on stay home, stay safe. “The cases which came to fore from Heerpora where during the lockdown and it is because of internal movement of people within mohallas,” he said, adding, “Please maintain isolation at home as strongly as possible.”
He said even in Heerpora, it cannot be termed as community spread as it is restricted to few households and “hopefully we will be able to control the situation.”
“Cases may rise but there is no need to panic. It is during the panic that we tend to do some unintelligent steps and tend to forget importance of social distancing and self-isolation. Keep a stable mind. Follow advisories issued by the government from time to time.”
Once in two days, he said, disinfection is going on in Heerpora and other areas.
“As regards supplies, ration for the whole month has been dropped long ago. We have also distributed LPG and kerosene and we also identified destitute families and from today, we are distributing food packets among them.”
Regarding Ramzan prayers, he said, Tehsildars have held meeting with all religious leaders and given the situation, it was decided there would be no congregations. “We have got a lot of support from Ulemas and religious heads. We have confidence that they will continue to render support during the Ramzan.”
Yasin, who addressed reporters after visiting Heerpora, according to GNS said, that there are 44 active cases while 11 cases have recovered and have been discharged. “432 people are under home quarantine, 127 under administrative quarantine and more than 2000 have completed home quarantine.”
He said 811 samples were tested and “predominantly around 500 samples have been taken from Heerpora.” “Our concentration is on Heerpora,” he added. (GNS)