Tripura govt asks BSF to conduct inquiry into spike in COVID-19 cases among jawans of 138th battalion

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The Tripura Government on Wednesday asked the IG of Tripura frontier of BSF to conduct an inquiry into the spurt of COVID-19 cases among jawans of 138 battalion of the paramilitary force posted in Dhalai district and submit a report within seven days.

Tripura Law minister Ratan Lal Nath said in the last five days, 40 BSF personnel or their family members tested positive for COVID-19 and all of them were from the 138th battalion of BSF with headquarters at Ambassa in Dhalai district, 100 km from here.

Nath said the Principal Secretary (Home) Barun Kumar Sahu in a letter to the IG, BSF, Solomon Minz told him to enquire into the origin of the COVID-19 cases and steps taken by the BSF to prevent further infection among common people and submit a report to the state government within seven days.

Two BSF jawans of 138 battalion headquarters at Ambassa tested positive on May 2, the very next day 12 more BSF personnel tested positive, on May 4 thirteen more tested positive and on May 5 another 13 BSF jawans tested positive for COVID-19. All the 40 corona positive persons are either BSF jawans or their family members.

The state government has declared Dhalai district as red zone and marked three locations the battalion headquarters, a base camp at Gandacherra and a Border Out Post with Bangladesh at Kareena as containment zones.

Public Relations Officer (PRO) of BSF said the paramilitary force was also conducting an investigation about the source of the infection and all activities including PT, parade and group gathering of jawans have been stopped.

“The entry of any civilian into any BSF camp has been stopped for the time being. No BSF jawan is also allowed to go outside,” the PRO added.

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