A total of 415 front line workers in Bengal have been detected COVID positive with 12 succumbing to the infection, said Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today while announcing a government job for a family member of frontline workers in the event of their death in the fight against Covid-19.

Speaking at a programme to pay tribute to COVID warriors via video conference from Nabanna Sabhaghar, Miss Banerjee said the state government salutes the COVID warriors and is awarding them with a medal and certification for their relentless service.

“Our doctors, nurses, health workers, Asha workers, police and all front line workers who are working against the pandemic are being recognised as COVID warriors,” she said in Nabanna.

“A total of 403 out of 415 infected front line workers have survived. Of which, there are 268 police personnel, 30 doctors, 43 nurses and 62 employees,” said Miss Banerjee adding that Rs one lakh is provided to every infected frontline COVID worker and Rs 10 lakh each to the family members of the deceased.

Till now, the Rs one lakh assistance has been given to 284 workers while the assistance for 119 workers is in the process and till now the state government has spent Rs 5.23 crore in this regard.

This apart, the Rs 10 lakh compensation has already been given to the families of 12 deceased workers. Miss Banerjee said as testing and tracking have been increased, there is a subsequent rise in COVID cases.

To rule out the harassment faced by patient parties in taking the patient from one hospital to another for admission, Miss Banerjee said that the state health department will henceforth decide the hospital where the patient will be admitted depending on his symptoms and also inform about the places where tests would be conducted.

Slamming the opposition parties and some media houses for criticising the government’s handling of COVID situation, Miss Banerjee said some parties are doing dirty politics but this is not the correct time for it.

Stressing that home quarantine is the best option for mildly symptomatic patients, she suggested housing complexes to arrange oximeters for residents to measure the oxygen level in blood.

She urged local clubs to play an active role in generating awareness on preventing the infection from spreading and ensure that people of the locality wear masks and maintain physical distance.

Reiterating that DMs have been directed to ensure that Amphan relief assistance reaches all beneficiaries, Miss Banerjee said that 99 per cent of them have already received their aid.

The state Cabinet today approved a Rs 1500 crore project for undertaking minor irrigation in 1,25,000 hectares of land.

She said that DVC released water on Monday without informing the government and said that before releasing water she should be given prior information. Earlier during the day, Global Advisory Board on Covid-19 Response Policy has suggested that to control the spread of the disease, it is very important that the government identifies highinfection clusters and makes them local containment zones.