Rail track damage delays return of Manipur natives

GUWAHATI: The disruption in rail link between Lumding and Badarpur following incessant rain in Assam has hampered the return of several stranded citizens to Manipur even as the state government has so far brought 22,419 of them by train.

“The state government is making all-out efforts to bring back all stranded people from various trains, having already organized 22 trains. Unfortunately, due to incessant rain in Assam, the railway track between Lumding and Badarpur has been washed away and it is likely to take 10 days to repair,” state chief secretary, J. Suresh Babu, informed.

As a result, two Jiribam-bound trains, one from Chennai with 1028 passengers, and another from Mumbai with 1639 passengers had to be terminated in Guwahati.

“The Manipur government had to hire 30 buses from Assam and sent another 23 buses from Imphal to Guwahati to bring the passengers to the state. Further arrangement for trains will be considered only after the railway track is repaired,” the chief secretary said.

13 more COVID cases

Meanwhile, the flooding of returnees has invariably triggered substantial rise in coronavirus cases in Manipur, with another 13 persons, all returnees, testing COVID-19 positive at the Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Medical Sciences (JNIMS.

They belong to Bishnupur (one male), Chandel (one male), Churachandpur (one male and one female), Kangpokpi (one male, four female including a three-year-old), Tamenglong (one female) and Tengnoupal (three male) districts.

The natives of Bishnupur and Kangpokpi districts are returnees from Mumbai, those hailing from Chandel and Tamenglong are returnees from Delhi while the Tengnoupal natives are returnees from Pune.

One positive person from Churachandpur district is a Chennai returnee while the other one is a nurse with no travel history.

“They have been shifted to the COVID care facility at JNIMS. Their condition is stable. All necessary precautionary measures such as containment and contact tracing are in place,” additional director and spokesperson for Manipur health department, Khoirom S Mangang, informed in a statement issued on Thursday.

The state currently has 121 COVID-19 positive cases and 83 active cases.  

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