People returning from other states to be quarantined for 21 days: Punjab CM

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Thursday said people returning from other states will be kept under 21-day quarantine in designated buildings.

During a video-conference with district collectors and senior police officers, he directed sarpanchs to identify schools and other buildings in villages for quarantine purposes.

The chief minister also appealed to sarpanchs and panchayats to increase village-level surveillance to check further spread of the disease.

He said no one coming from outside should be allowed to go home without completing the 21-day quarantine period, since symptoms generally show up after some time.

"Where possible, those found positive and negative should be segregated in different buildings altogether," he suggested.

So far, 3525 pilgrims from Nanded in Maharashtra and 153 students from Kota, Rajasthan have returned to Punjab in the last four days. As many as 3,085 labourers were also received at the Fazilka-Rajasthan border during the period, according to an official statement.

The chief minister directed district collectors and senior superintendents of police to ensure that all those coming from outside download the COVA app (coronavirus alert application) to enable strict monitoring of their movement through Geo Fencing.

In the meeting, the chief minister also discussed relaxations to be provided during the lockdown in the state.

Ruling out any relaxation at the state borders, which continue to remain strictly sealed, the chief minister said there was no question of allowing any buses to enter Punjab without permit/approval from the respective states which are sending vehicles to pick up their people.

He directed the officers to ensure strict enforcement of the sealing at the borders and asserted that "we will not allow anyone to enter without proper procedure".

The chief minister attributed the infections in the state to three sources NRIs, Nizamuddin Tablighi Jamaat and Nanded returnees.

Stressing that industry was critical to reviving the state's economy, he asked the DCs to explore ways of facilitating the same.

Of the 2.5 lakh odd industries in the state, around 3600 were eligible to open, and of these, so far a mere 1100 had chosen to open up, he pointed out.