Around 18 new Covid- 19 have been detected in areas that fall under Darjeeling district in the Siliguri Municipal Corporation (SMC) in the past 24 hours. The fresh cases included seven heath workers of a private nursing home, while two cases have been reported in the Matigara Block. A total of 30 patients have also been discharged from Covid hospitals in Siliguri after they recovered, officials said.
36 new cases in Malda In Malda, 36 fresh cases of Covid-19 were detected in tests conducted at the VRDL in the Malda Medical College and Hospital last night. Sources said the new cases included 11 women and two children. “Twelve more cases are from the English Bazaar block and eight from the English Bazaar Municipality (EBM) area,” sources said.
A sample sent by a private nursing home in the EBM area was also tested positive, and sources said that the health department had been mulling plans to close the private hospital. Student tests positive In North Dinajpur, tension spread among locals after a class X student and a resident of Ward 9 in the Dalkhola Municipality was tested positive for the virus. Three more persons in the district have also tested positive, sources said.
The total number of Covid cases in the district has now gone up to 328. Seven more in South Dinajpur In South Dinajpur, the number of Covid-19 cases is seeing a jump. Seven more cases were detected in the district this morning, taking the total number of affected to 228. However, officials said 200 patients have been discharged after recovery. No new case in Alipurduar in past three days.
Meanwhile, no new Covid case has been found in Alipurduar in the past three days, much to the relief of officials. A total of 190 cases have been so far reported in the district. SMC Board stresses on random tests In Siliguri, a spike in the cases has prompted the Board of Administrators (BoA) of the Siliguri Municipal Corporation (SMC) to stress on random Covid-19 testing to reach out to a maximum number of people.
Member of the BoA, health, Sankar Ghosh, said many people are not being treated as they have not undergone Covid-19 tests. “The situation in Darjeeling district, especially Siliguri, is a matter of concern. Special steps should be taken to tackle the situation. The health department needs to conduct tests through random samplings in order to detect more cases. Even experts have underscored that the low testing rate will result in underestimating the number of infected persons.
At the same time, the number of testing facilities should be increased,” Mr Ghosh said. Highlighting the sharp rise in the cases, Mr Ghosh said that till 18 May, there were only seven cases in the district, while in Alipurduar there was no case, but in Malda there were 34 cases.
“Till 1 June, there were 27 in Darjeeling district, five in Alipurduar and 142 in Malda. Similarly, till 15 June, the cases went up to 219 in Darjeeling district, while the figure for Alipurduar was 74 and Malda 321. Till 1 July, the number of cases in Darjeeling district shot up to 495, while there were 184 cases in Alipurduar and 676 in Malda district. If we look at the figures till 4 July, 579 cases have been reported in Darjeeling district, among them 139 were active cases, while there were 187 cases in Alipurduar and 780 cases in Malda, of which 311 were active.
When there were only 27 cases in Darjeeling district, the number jumped to 495 in one month,” he said. Mr Ghosh said more testing facilities were needed. “In West Bengal, there are 52 testing laboratories for diagnosis of Covid-19 infections. Among them, there are only three governmentrun laboratories in north Bengal. Efforts should be made to expand the testing facilities,” he said. Patient dies A 72-year-old woman of Ward 35 in Siliguri and admitted in the Covid hospital at Kawakhali died today.
She was admitted yesterday after being referred from the North Bengal Medical College and Hospital. Bista seeks strict Siliguri lockdown On the other hand, Darjeeling MP Raju Bista has written to Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and the DMs of Darjeeling and Jalpaiguri, urging them to maintain strict lockdown in the Siliguri Municipal Corporation area and connected Blocks, where cases have sharply risen, for the next 15 days.
“I believe this is the only way to break the Covid transmission chain in north Bengal,” he has said in the letter. “In their desperate bid to contain the pandemic, today the WB Govt is ordering shutting down of one market or the other in Siliguri, but I feel that as long as people move around freely, shutting the markets alone won’t make any difference.
“These patchwork approaches to containment will only cause further escalation of the pandemic, not only in Siliguri but in other regions of north Bengal also. As people will feel a false sense of security that only markets are Covid prone and not other parts of the city. This is very dangerous,” Mr Bista said.