Meghalaya govt tells BSF not to provide wrong figures on COVID-19 positive cases

Shillong July 2: The Meghalaya government has asked the BSF not to provide wrong figures to the people of the state on COVID-19 positive cases, even as it maintained that so far only six positive cases have been detected from among the BSF personnel including the wife of a BSF driver.

“I have instructed Chief Secretary M.S.Rao to write to the BSF Frontier headquarters here to directly deal with the State government on matters relating to COVID-19 cases,” Health and Family Welfare Minister, Alexander Laloo Hek said.

Stating that number of COVID-19 cases are being confirmed by the state Health and Family Welfare Department after testing the samples, Hek said, “We have told the BSF that the number of COVID-19 cases are being confirmed by the state government.”

The BSF on Wednesday had claimed that there were 11 COVID-19 positive patients.

While clarifying the BSF’s statement, Director Health Services, Dr Aman War said that earlier the BSF Meghalaya Frontier had informed that some of the troopers were tested positive for COVID-19 on their arrival in Assam.

“Since those troopers are posted in Meghalaya they were sent to Shillong for quarantine in their own campus. However when we collected their swab samples and retested in Shillong, they were all found negative,” the health official said.

Dr War maintained that only five BSF troopers and one lady, the wife of one BSF personnel who is the driver, were tested positive for COVID-19 in Shillong.

“Therefore, the number of positive cases given by the BSF is incorrect and there is no controversy on this. We are not counting those who were tested positive in Assam because they were tested negative in Shillong,” he said.

Meghalaya, so far, recorded a total of 56 COVID-19 positive cases which include 12 active cases, 43 have recovered and one has died.

Dr War also said that as per the information shared to the state government, around 150 more BSF personnel of the Meghalaya Frontier would come to the state.

“We have requested the BSF not to ask its troopers not to return to the State at one go, but they can come in batches to minimise the risk of getting infected by the virus,” the health official said.

In fact, the Meghalaya government had earlier requested the Union Ministry of Home Affairs to keep on hold transfer of Central government employees including paramilitary forces in view of the rise of COVID-19 positive cases in the country.