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Four more die in Siliguri

Former minister infected in Malda; South Dinajpur spike continues; 128 in N Dinajpur

Statesman News Service | Siliguri |

Four persons who had tested positive for Covid-19 died in Siliguri in the past 24 hours. A 70-year-old resident of Panighatta under the Mirik sub-division died in the respiratory intensive care unit of the North Bengal Medical College and Hospital (NBMCH) today, while a 62- year-old resident of Subhas Pally died there yesterday.

A 65-year-old resident of Mainaguri in Jalpaiguri district died in the Desun Hospital at Kawakhali today. It is further learnt that an 85- year-old resident of NJP area died in a private nursing home yesterday.

59 fresh cases in Darjeeling district

Meanwhile, the Siliguri Municipal Corporation registered 28 positive cases. Darjeeling district officials said 59 cases were freshly detected in the district, with 15 in the SMC, 17 in Naxalbari, 10 in Matigara, one in Sukna, five in Kurseong Municipality, five in Kharibari, four in Kurseong sub-division and two in Mirik.

148 in South Dinajpur

The spike in the number of Covid cases in South Dinajpur continued with the district reporting another 148 infections. Given the situation, the district administration has increased the number of containment zones in the district. “There are containment zones in all the 25 wards now,” sources said, adding that the partial lockdown from 2 pm to 7 am will also continue in all containment zones.

Patiram and Gopalbati gram panchayats under the Balurghat block witnessed the highest number of fresh infections. One case each was found in the Power House, Sukantapalli, Khadimpur, Rabindranath, Masterpara and Battala in Balurghat town, while six were reported to be infected in Dakbanglo Para under the Balurghat municipality.

New infections were also reported in Gangarampur Municipality areas like Wards 9, 7, 14, 6, Haldarpara and Padmapukur areas. The total number of patients in the district has gone up to 2453, while 85 people from different safe houses returned home after defeating corona today. “In total, 1705 people have been discharged after treatment in the district,” sources said.

74 in Malda

In Malda, former minister and chairman of the English Bazaar Municipality, Krishnendu Narayan Choudhury, was tested positive for Covid- 19 last night, along with 73 other persons in tests conducted at the VRDL in the Malda Medical College and Hospital. Mr Choudhury, who has been suffering from pancreatic disease and had earlier undergone heart surgery, is now undergoing treatment in home isolation, sources said.

Spike in North Dinajpur

In North Dinajpur, 128 new positive cases were detected in the past 24 hours, the highest total of affected persons in a single day in the district so far. Twenty of them are residents of different wards in Raiganj municipality, and it includes the TMC councillor of Ward No 7, Puspa Majumder. Sources said that Mrs Majumder had shared the stage with other councilors and intellectuals in Raiganj during the Independence Day function on 15 August. The councillor’s driver and the private assistant have also tested positive, it is learnt.

Bista slams Siliguri cremation fees

Darjeeling MP Raju Bista, who has been criticising the state government for allegedly suppressing Covid-19 data and giving out misleading information on Covid hospitals in Darjeeling, today lamented the fact that people will now have to pay for the cremation of their near and dear ones who die of Covid- 19 in Siliguri. “I am dismayed to hear that the West Bengal Government has now ordered a crematorium in Dabgram-Fulbari zone to charge Rs 1000 for cremation of a Covid patient’s dead body,” Mr Bista said in a release.

It may be mentioned here that a private agency that has been looking after the crematorium at Sahudangi in Siliguri yesterday said it will charge the cremation fee of Rs 1000 it had been taking earlier, as it was having problems running the operations. It has also said that it would charge Rs 150 extra for the bamboo stretcher needed for the cremation.

“While in Kolkata, the TMC government has provided crematorium facilities for free to all Covid deaths, they seem to be least bothered about the plight of Covid sufferers from North Bengal,” Mr Bista said.

“When the West Bengal government has mindlessly spent thousands of crores of public money for anti-CAA campaign, by putting up hoardings of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and distributing thousands of crores to TMC affiliated clubs, why can’t they bear the cost of these cremations,” Mr Bista said.