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Dilip Kumar

News Highlights

  • Inmates protest poor facilities at quarantine centre in Gajapati 

  • Food not being served in time, they alleged

  • BDO assures early resolve of issues 

Gajapati: The Odisha government’s tall claim of ensuring adequate facilities for returnees from other States fell flat after a number of migrants workers reportedly staged a protest alleging irregular serving of food at a centre in Gajapati district on Sunday. 

The incident took place at Luhagudi quarantine centre under Mohana Block in the district where several migrants have been undergoing institutional quarantine after their return from other places.

The inmates alleged that they were not given food in time for the last three days. A nearby hotel owner had been supplying them food thrice a day for the last few days, but has stopped the services now.

They further alleged that they remained in empty stomach after being denied breakfast till 11 am today. Hunger forced them to go outside in search of food, they added. 

“It’s already 11 am now. But, we are yet to have our breakfast. No decision has been taken on how many days we should stay here. We have not trespassed, but the gate was opened on our request. As foods are not being given in time, we wanted to go out,” said an inmate. 

Mohana Block Development Officer (BDO) Loknath Dalbehera admitted the lapses. He said the problem cropped up after a local hotel owner stopped providing meals to the centre.

“An eatery owner provided food to the quarantine centre inmates. But, now he refused to provide as number of migrants increased. So, I have asked an SHG to make food arrangement for the migrants. The problem will be resolved immediately,” Dalbehera added.

Notably, heavy influx of migrants from Andhra, Telangana, Karnataka has been reported in Gajapati and Ganjam and other neighbouring district following detection of a virulent strain of Covid-19 in Andhra Pradesh.

Odisha government has made 14-day mandatory quarantine for the returnees of Andhra and Telangana. Besides, check posts have been erected at all points bordering Andhra and Telanagana.

Vehicles are being frisked on the border. No vehicles carrying travellers from outside are allowed to enter Odisha except emergency vehicles. 

People who are coming to the home State have been kept at cluster quarantine centres. Those who show RT-PCR negative report or final vaccination certificate have been asked to remain under home isolation for seven days.

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