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Ramakanta Biswas

The rising cases of Covid-19 infections among students in educational institutions across Odisha amid fears of a possible third wave seem to have sent health authorities in the State into a tizzy. 

The latest addition in the long list of institutions hit by Covid-19 is Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalaya (KGBV) in Kaptipada of Mayurbhanj district where several students have reportedly tested positive for the virus.  

Following report of students contracting Covid, a medical team from Kaptipada visited the educational institution and collected samples from all students, teachers and other staff. 

Those who have so far been tested positive in antigen test will undergo RT-PCR test. Similarly, arrangements have been made to shift Covid-19 negative students to a separate place, sources said.

Notably, educational institutions across the State continued to report Covid infection among students ever since schools reopened for physical classes. Recently, 10 students of a government run girl’s school in Odisha’s Bolangir district tested positive for COVID-19.

Similarly, two students of Capital High School and more than 10 teachers of Kendriya Vidyalaya-1 tested positive for Covid-19 in Bhubaneswar. 

Speaking on the situation, School and Mass Education Minister Samir Dash said, “Physical classes are being conducted as per the SOP issued by our department. Wherever it is necessary, the district administration is taking measures and conducting rapid testing. Students have been advised not to attend class if they develop any symptom.” 

“Some isolated cases of Covid infection are being reported from educational institutions in the State. But it will not hamper the overall study atmosphere,” he added.  

Asked about plans for change in timing of schools in view of Covid infection, the Minister said no such decision has been taken so far.

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