India

1,000 Bhopal cops moved to hotels days after positive cases

1,000 Bhopal cops moved to hotels days after positive cases
On Wednesday, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan also said that police officials got the infection from Jamaat members. (File Photo/Representational)

More than 1,000 police personnel from several police stations in Bhopal have been relocated to hotels and guesthouses over the last two days after 11 police personnel, including a young IPS officer, and five of their relatives tested positive for COVID-19.

The police believe personnel from Jahangirabad Police Station in old Bhopal contracted the virus while tracing members of different Jamaats who participated in last month’s Tablighi Jamaat congregation in Delhi.

Twenty members of four different Jamaats, who came to Bhopal in early March, have reported positive for coronavirus so far.

ADG Upendra Jain told The Indian Express that police personnel have been sent to hotels and guesthouses to break the chain by ensuring that they do not return home, or the police quarters. He said more than 300 samples of police personnel and their family members and neighbours have been sent for testing so far and results are awaited.

On Wednesday, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan also said that police officials got the infection from Jamaat members. He also said the returning members affected people in Sironj and Khargone districts — while only one member has so far tested positive in Sironj, one member and multiple members of his family have been confirmed positive in the latter.

About 60 foreigners were among those who had come to Bhopal from the Nizamuddin Markaz following last month’s Tablighi congregation, according to officials.

The infection is suspected to have spread among police personnel from Jahangirabad Police Station to their compatriots in T T Nagar quarters.

The Jamaat members, who were living in different mosques, were relocated to a couple of places acquired by the administration. After receiving complaints that the members were moving out, the administration shifted many of them to a bigger shrine on the outskirts of Bhopal.

The place was sanitised in the presence of district administration officials before they were shifted. Those who show symptoms of the virus will be quarantined, officials said.

ADG Jain said that since the infected police personnel came in contact with their colleagues in other police stations, arrangements have been made for so many personnel to live away from their families. Each police official has been given a separate room in the acquired premises, he added.

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