Chandel, April 22
YAS and Water Resources Minister Letpao Haokip had chaired the review meeting to discuss the measures taken to contain and prevent the spread of COVID-19, including distribution and availability of essential items of the two districts of Chandel and Tengnoupal. It may be mentioned that the containment efforts are regarded to be of paramount importance in these two districts as they share international territorial boundary with the neighbouring country Myanmar, and Letpao has been assigned as the District-in charge for supervision of these two districts.
The CMOs and SPs, in the meeting today, brought up the major issues faced by them—mostly in fencing and guarding the porous Indo-Myanmar border, and the shortage of basic medical-related items such as masks, PPEs and good-conditioned ambulance vehicles.
Speaking to media persons after the meeting, Letpao said that the challenging part under his supervision is that more than 90% of the population of the villages located in border areas have heavily relied on Myanmar for the basic needs for their survival. But they have been facing severe hardship now with the sealing of the border fencing and the hindrances and restrictions faced by them to get essential items from Imphal. So, the focus now has to be on the opening of fair price shops availing essential items at certain locations of Chandel and Tengnoupal at the earliest, he added. Here, it is worth mentioning that the State Cabinet meeting held few days back had resolved to open fair price shops in certain designated areas throughout the state for availability of essential items without overpricing.
The Minister also hinted that better and more effective tackling measures will be arranged in border-lying villages as it has been reported that some Manipuri prisoners at Myanmar Jail will be freed by the Myanmarese authorities, and they should not bring any COVID-19 related health dangers upon their return.
He further added that to boost the morale of the police personnel who have been frontlining in containing this pandemic, rice items will be supplied from his personal side to the police teams deployed in these two districts.
In spite of the fear looming large over the location of these districts in the border, Letpao appealed that so far, there has not been any serious issues arising out of these pandemic in the districts and the two district administrations along with the respective medical and police have been successful in containing the COVID-19 pandemic. Those who have been quarantined had successfully completely, and those remaining undergoing are also doing fine as of now. He appealed the people of these two districts not to panic and he will make sure that they are not affected and are not deprived from food and other essential items. He assured that he will look into challenges faced by the frontlining departments and will ensure that all such problems are solved as fast as possible.
The review meeting was held at the Conference Hall of Mini Secretariat, Chandel. The meeting was attended by the DCs, SPs, CMOs, SDOS and other top officials of the districts of Chandel and Tengnoupal.
Later, the Minister and DCs distributed rice items to officials and village heads for distribution to the remaining areas.