770 booked for breaking home isolation in Bengaluru | Bengaluru News – Times of India


BENGALURU: Nearly 770 people have been booked in the city for violating home quarantine rules in the past 30 days. About 1.4 lakh people are currently in home isolation, according to civic body BBMP.
Hangouts with friends and store trips to buy essential items are the main reasons cited by the offenders. Many also blatantly lie about their infractions.
A senior BBMP official, who is in charge of home quarantine protocols, said such callous attitude was causing problems for the city and its fight against Covid-19. “BBMP can get thousands of volunteers to monitor a ward, but if people don’t take it seriously, we cannot do much,” he said.
Over 30,000 volunteers, including BBMP marshals, health officials and members of apartment and resident welfare associations, are helping authorities keep an eye on people in quarantine. Yet, the number of people disregarding isolation rules is very high.
“The excuses they give are baffling. ‘We stepped out to meet our friends, we were bored.’ Is this worth risking everyone’s health?” said another BBMP official. “Keeping the young population in line is challenging. They don’t listen to us and sneak out of their homes.”
Visiting a store to buy groceries is also a prominent factor. “Those quarantined at home may not be technically in containment zones. So, many of them ignore safety advice and venture out to buy things. This is a big group. They don’t understand that they could be potential carriers of the virus and might infect others,” said a senior health official handling the Covid-19 surveillance efforts.
According to special commissioner J Manjunath, Mahadevapura zone, Bengaluru South and Bengaluru East have the highest number of travellers who arrived in the city by road, train or flight.
Over 60 per cent of the violators of home quarantine lie that they never stepped out. “Everyone who returned to the city would have downloaded Seva Sindhu application and registered themselves. They are also asked to download Quarantine Watch app, so they can be monitored for a 14-day period,” said Manjunath.
Many people delete the application or leave their phones at home while stepping out. “Often, neighbours alert BBMP officials about such breaches. When officials confront the violators, they lie saying they never went out,” Manjunath said.
A popular excuse is: “We never knew that we were not supposed to go out. Nobody told us.”
“The excuses are embarrassing. All returnees are clearly told that they should stay inside for 14 days,” he added.
So far, no serious action has been taken other than naming the violators in police FIRs. Police officers visit their homes and issue a warning. “Home quarantine plays a vital role in controlling the spread of coronavirus. People should understand that the protocols are designed for their and their family members’ safety,” Manjunath said.
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Sagar Biswas

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