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SHILLONG/TURA: West Garo Hills is experiencing a massive spike in COVID-19 infections with 34 cases being identified on Friday alone raising the total number of active coronavirus cases in the district to 135 and the state to 674.
The largest number of 26 cases has been reported from Tikrikilla region during random testing, raising concern among health and surveillance teams, while other cases were reported from Phulbari and adjoining area.
Eight positive cases are from paramilitary personnel who have returned after completion of their leave.
“All the identified positive cases have been moved to isolation and necessary steps including contact tracing and containment zones have been put in place,” informed West Garo Hills Deputy Commissioner Ram Singh on Friday night.
Meanwhile, following demands from protesting groups of Dalu border town to halt the boulder export trade to Bangladesh by Bhutan trucks through Dalu citing corona infection fears, Singh clarified that random testing for COVID-19 was carried out on 69 truckers arriving at Dalu on Friday, all of whom turned out negative.
A trader from Old Bhaitbari town in Phulbari region tested positive after allegedly violating prohibitory orders by illegally travelling to Assam.
In Shillong, the Health department is in a dilemma over detection of COVID-19 cases among two patients without any travel history.
A resident of Rilbong without any travel history has tested positive while another SARI patient from Mawbah also tested positive. In both these cases, the “source” of infection remains unidentified.
“We are conducting contact tracing but if a person tests positive and does not know from where he got COVID-19, it will be a major cause for concern,” DHS (MI) Dr Aman War said on Friday, while informing that the wife of the Rilbong resident had tested positive earlier.
“The couple run a shop in the locality and had been visiting different places before testing positive,” Dr War said, even as he asserted that the department was conducting random antigen testing in the sensitive localities.
The patient from Mawbah had visited Nazareth Hospital and was admitted in the isolation centre of the hospital after testing positive.
The state reported 68 new cases including 53 in West Garo Hills, 14 in East Khasi Hills and one Assam returnee in South West Garo Hills.
In East Khasi Hills, apart from the two patients from Rilbong and Mawbah, seven BSF personnel, one returnee from Haryana, one staff nurse of Shillong Civil Hospital and three high risk contacts of a positive case of NEIGRIHMS (two in Mawlai Nongkwar and one in Upper Shillong) tested positive.
The total active cases in the state stood at 674 including 419 in East Khasi Hills, 135 in West Garo Hills, 83 in Ri Bhoi, 16 in West Jaintia Hills, six in North Garo Hills, five in East Jaintia Hills, three each in West Khasi Hills, South West Garo Hills and South Garo Hills and one in South West Khasi Hills.
34 patients recovered on Friday including 31 in East Khasi Hills (Armed Force-1, BSF-8 and others-22), two BSF personnel in West Garo Hills and one in East Jaintia Hills, taking the number of recoveries to 581.