Meghalaya: Umling entry point intensifies screening of inbound visitors

The State Health Department, worried by the sudden increase in the number of COVID-19 cases has asked officials manning the Umling entry point to intensify the screening of inbound residents and visitors.

A Health official, requesting anonymity, said many people are not following the standard operating procedures (SOPs) in place and that the virus could be spreading from people coming from outside the state.

“There seems to be some laxity at the Umling gate,” the official said, adding that the Umling gate officials have been asked to be extra careful with visitors.

The state government had recently issued an order making it mandatory for everyone coming from outside the state to undergo RT-PCR tests.

Unconfirmed reports said people often board local vehicles from Byrnihat to Nongpoh and beyond to avoid checking at the Umling gate.

The Health official said the department is trying its best to break the chain of the virus in the state with 900 COVID-19 vaccine shots being administered every day. “But we are facing a shortage of funds,” he added.

Making it clear that the onus is on the people to take precautions, the official said the department is planning to open the MATI isolation center once again while the COVID ward in Shillong Civil Hospital has been reopened.

Surge in COVID-19 cases

Meghalaya has been registering more than 100 cases a day for the last few days.

The government said it has taken less than a week for the number of COVID-19 cases in Meghalaya to cross 500 compared to two months last year.

“Even as stringent monitoring and testing is being done for everyone entering the state, it is vital that crowded places like markets don’t become hotbeds for the virus to spread. For this, all citizens need to wear masks properly, wash and sanitize their hands regularly, and spend minimum time at shops and markets,” a district administration official said.

On Saturday, 83 people were fined for non-compliance with the COVID-19 guidelines as 95 contracted the novel coronavirus, including 50 in the East Khasi Hills district. The day also saw 11 people recovering.

The 50 new cases include 34 returnees and two are armed forces personnel.

The number of active cases in Meghalaya stands at 649, East Khasi Hills district accounting for 475 of them and West Jaintia Hills district 97. The novel coronavirus has claimed 152 lives in the state so far.

Officials said 1,600 doss – both first and second – were administered on Saturday. A total of 1,72,197 people have been vaccinated so far.

Notice for St Edmunds College students-

The St Edmund’s College has informed students that all classes will be held online according to the timetable from April 19 in view of the rising COVID-19 cases. The routine will continue until further notice.
The college also said the chemistry practical examination for students of botany will be held on April 19 while all other practical classes are being postponed for the time being. The college has advised the students not to come to college unnecessarily.


(The Shillong Times)

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