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IMCT shoots off 2 more letters to Bengal govt citing non-cooperation; no fresh deaths reported in state

The team has also asked the state government to furnish information on testing, quarantining and contact tracing of persons who returned from the mass gathering at Nizamuddin in Delhi last month. Currently, the total active Corona cases in Bengal is 423.

The Statesman Desk | Kolkata |

The central team visiting Kolkata to assess Corona situation today yet again shot off two letters to the state government complaining of non cooperation in providing necessary logistics and information. The team has also asked the state government to furnish information on testing, quarantining and contact tracing of persons who returned from the mass gathering at Nizamuddin in Delhi last month. Currently, the total active Corona cases in Bengal is 423.

A total of 105 patients have been discharged from hospitals. No person has died due to Corona since yesterday. In the two letters to Chief Secretary Rajiva Sinha, the inter-ministerial central team (IMCT) led by senior bureaucrat Apurba Chandra, sought a “written communication” about the state’s stand on ensuring safety and security of the members and providing necessary information instead of briefing through the media.

The team complained that despite sending four letters they have not received any response from the state government till now. Chandra wrote that the chief secretary has told the media at daily press conference that the team is free to visit anywhere and that the state officials cannot waste time in accompanying them. This is a violation of MHA order wherein the state has been asked to provide the logistics, the letter read.

The team sought to know whether the state will take responsibility of the safety and security of the team if it ventures out in absence of police or whether BSF will be permitted to take action to ensure the team’s safety in absence of police.

“The stand of the state government on facilitating visits of IMCT and ensuring safety and security of team members and also providing information and records may be made clear through written communication rather than through media so that further steps can be taken,” Chandra wrote.

Chandra asked whether it’s true that the team can’t leave their camp office without the state’s permission except going to the airport. In the second letter, Chandra said IMCT was given half an hour notice to visit quarantine centre at Dumurjola stadium, Sanjivani Hospital in Uluberia and containment zone in Salkia yesterday.

Though the 80 inmates of Dumurjola stadium were satisfied with the food and lodging facilities, they could not know the well being of their contacts at Covid hospitals as mobile phones have been banned, the team has observed. The team has yet again asked for the information that it had earlier sought along with the hardcopy of the presentation that was put up before them.

Meanwhile, the central team to north Bengal suggested stricter implementation of lockdown there. In a letter to Sinha, the central team in north Bengal, led by Vineet Joshi, said more field officers are required to monitor and provide feedback about the effectiveness of various measures undertaken by the government.

Reacting to the central team’s letters, Trinamul Congress leader and national president of Indian Medical Association (IMA) Dr Santanu Sen claimed that the contents of the letters were incorrect and the the letters seem to be from a political party. “The team criticised the delay in test results but did not say that the delay was due to the detective kits provided by NICED,” Dr Sen said.