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Dipti Ranjan Das

Berhampur: He had expected it to be a very relieving experience amid Covid pandemic but much to his surprise his homecoming was more of a humiliation.

Madhav Patra who belongs to Basudevpur of Sanakhemundi block in Ganjam district narrates how he has been spending past several days in an agony of isolation after being denied entry to his very own village.

Restricted by Anganwadi workers and villagers from entering the village over the fear of Covid-19 spread, Madhav who returned from Bihar amid lockdown is staying in his car for the last 5 days.

Madhav claims that despite completing his quarantine period in his apartment at Berhampur after returning from Bihar and going through swab test where he tested negative, he has been asked by the villagers to either stay out of the village or go on quarantine at the Saraswati Sishu Mandir Covid health camp situated in the area.

Caught in the difficult situation, Madhav says that he has isolated himself in his vehicle but does not want to go to the quarantine camp as he believes that the chances of getting cross-contamination by the virus are high at the Covid health centre.

Speaking to OTV, Madhav said that he has all the necessary documents, permissions and test result to substantiate his claim of following government guidelines. In spite of that, the villagers lodged a complaint against him at the local police station where eventually he was asked to re-quarantine himself before entering into the village, he alleged.

Narrating about his ordeal, Madhav said, "I was stuck at Bihar during the lockdown after which I took permission from the collector to travel by road since I have a car. Collector then asked me to contact Tehasildar from whom my brother collected permission in writing. After returning, as a responsible citizen, I informed Berhampur municipality where they initiated my case and I home quarantined myself before heading towards the village. I was later tested negative and in fact, I had informed the nodal officer before leaving for the village but the situation turned out to be quite unexpected at my arrival. The villagers are in denial to have a look at all the documents and permissions that I have. Instead, I got humiliated."

He has urged the authorities to give immediate attention to his hapless situation and allow him to enter the village where his family dwells.

(Edited by: Suryakant Jena)

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