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26 test positive in a housing society of IAS officers

by Raju Vernekar
0 comment 3 minutes read

By our Correspondent
Mumbai, June 9:

Nearly 26 persons who either reside or work in “Yashodhan”, located at Churchgate in South Mumbai, a home to senior bureaucrats, have tested positives for COVID-19 disturbing bureaucracy in Maharashtra.
The infected persons include a woman IAS officer, a principal secretary in charge of migrant transportation, her IPS officer husband and their two daughters. They are being treated in Breach Candy Hospital in South Mumbai. Three others who tested positive are car drivers of some other bureaucrats, two are officials from the public works department, while the rest are employed as helpers and domestic helps in the building.
Eight of the 26 were actually staying in the building, while the remaining would come from outside. According to BMC officials, the index case or the point of contact from where the infection spread in the latest instance are two domestic helps who tested positive eight days ago. Now 16 of the infected persons have been shifted to a Covid care centre near CST station.  Most of them are asymptomatic and stable, Additional Municipal Commissioner Suresh Kakani said and added that floors where people have tested positive will be sealed. Officials whose house domestic helps have tested positive will be tested after five days. If they test negative, they will be advised home quarantine for some more days.
“Yashodhan” is one of the most sought-after government quarters in Mumbai. It is considered prestigious to get a home allotted there. The building has 2- and 3BHK flats; even officers of the rank of additional chief secretary stay here.
Situated on Dinsha Vachcha Road, the government-owned high-rise houses 42 senior officials. They include Home secretary Sanjay Kumar; Health Secretary Dr Pradeep Vyas; Medical Education Secretary Dr Sanjay Mukherjee, Additional Chief Secretary to the Chief Minister Ashish Kumar Singh, his wife Valsa Nair-Singh(who is the state Aviation Secretary), Principal Secretary Bhushan Gagrani, Women and Child Development Secretary Idzes Kundan( her IPS husband Niket Kaushik) and State Intelligence Department Commissioner Rashmi Shukla among others.
One floor of the building was sealed on 20 May, by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) when two IAS officers tested positive. Many officers playing active role in the campaign against coronavirus are residing in this building.
When it was noticed that two IAS officers tested positive because of their domestic servants, nearly 150 persons were made to undergo the COVID-19 test. Those tested included top officers and subordinate staff. The 26 persons include cooks, drivers and domestic helps, working for these officers. This development comes as a severe blow to the Maharashtra Government which has began mission “unlock 01” to bring the state on normal tracks, after prolonged lock down. Elsewhere in the country the incidents of IAS officers infected by COVID-19 have been reported from Bihar and Madhya Pradesh.
Besides these IAS officers, police personnel constitute the highest number of COVID-19 fatalities and in Maharashtra at least 33 Maharashtra Police personnel, including an officer, have died of COVID-19.  Those who succumbed in the state, include 18 of the Mumbai Police force.
As many as 2,562 police personnel have till now tested positive for the deadly disease in the state. The figures include 1497 active cases ( including 196 officers).  ”Police personnel posted for nakabandi duty, at quarantine and isolation facilities for the last three months have found to be infected, the Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh said.

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