Arunachal: inmates in Quarantine Facilities are provided 1.5 ltr water per day, alleged AAPSU

Itanagar- In many of the Quarantine facilities across the states, the inmates are provided with 500 ml water bottle per meal, in total 1.5 ltr water per day alleged All Arunachal Pradesh Students’ Union ( AAPSU ). Is 1.5 ltr water per day enough for a sick person who are advised to keep themselves properly hydrated throughout the day?  questioned AAPSU.

After receiving  constant complaints from parents, guardians & inmates to the union members about food quality & lack of drinking water, a team of AAPSU members under its Covid-19 Mission visited the Catering facility arranged by the District Administration for inmates and frontline workers of State Quarantine Facility cum Covid Care Centre at Lekhi, informed Meje Taku, Vice-President, AAPSU, in a press statement.

The AAPSU team interacted with the kitchen staffs, manager and the contractor to get first hand information about the working of the catering service for the Covid-19 patients.

Proper menu and diet should be planned for the inmates as per their requirements which should be compulsorily vetted by a dietician. Frontline workers, medical team, asymptomatic and co-morbid patients are provided with the same food. How can a Covid-19 positive patient who is already a diabetic be provided food similar to someone who is asymptomatic?  the AAPSU questioned.

The Union thorough its District Students’ Union and other members have been collecting reports from across the state. All over the districts, the condition is similar or worse than the one in SQF, Lekhi. The catering cum food management system for such facilities is not proper and needs immediate re-structuring, AAPSU said in the press release.

After thorough inspection, it was found that the workers responsible for cooking & handling the food for State Quarantine Facility cum Covid Care Centre were without proper hand gloves, face masks, hair caps etc. Further, it was also informed to the visiting members that there was no DIET plan for the inmates or Dietician to monitor the food/nutrition intake, said the press release, AAPSU said .

Further the release said, no formal agreement was made with the District Administration and the caterer. One Rangha Construction Company had been providing food for the SQF at Lekhi since 15 May 2020 only on verbal agreement & understanding with the L.O of DC Office, Itanagar.

AAPSU demanded Strict instructions should be passed by the State Govt in addition to necessary financial support for taking care of Fooding & lodging facilities of frontline workers & medical team deputed on 24×7 duties by the respective DCs & DMOs. Now is the time for proper hand-holding of our frontline workers by the State Government.

AAPSU also demanded Rapid tests should be done all across the state. We also demand for installation and early operationalization of TRUE NAT testing machines in all the districts of the state. Order for carrying out Antigen tests for Truck Drivers carrying essential commodities was recently issued.

The  Union reiterates its demand for ordering immediate closure of all religious institutions & places of worships in the state. There are reports that even in places where lockdowns are enforced many such places are open with limited number of believers or followers. The recent incident where 1 positive case was detected from a Prayer cum fasting Centre at 2 Kilo, Papu Nallah, Naharlagun leading to further detection of 18 other positive cases from amongst the primary contacts primarily happened due to absence of any restraining order on such places.

Medicines which are approved for serious Covid-19 positive patients by the ICMR should be made adequately available in all hospitals of the state. The State Govt should provide adequate PPE kits for frontline workers and medical team including the Police personnel’s on duty.

Meanwhile the the Union once again reiterates its demand for a white paper on Covid-19 management funds. The lack of preparedness and proper action plan with regards to handling the pandemic by the State Government more particularly the Dept of Health is for everyone to see. Total money received by Govt of India, Money spent on procurement of Medicines/PPE kits/Equipments, funds allocated to the districts/Money diverted from NEC & NESIDS to fight Covid-19 etc should be made public.

The reason we are demanding for this white paper is because despite months since Covid-19 was declared as a pandemic and tall claims, nothing much has been actually done on the ground by the state government. The Covid-19 hospital at Midpu which was supposed to come up in days is also not yet completed. We will chart our own course of action in days to come incase of the failure of the State Govt to come up with the White Paper.

The State Govt should dutifully honour the frontline workers who lose their lives on duty as “Martyr” and make provisions for adequate compensation of their immediate family members, AAPSU stated


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