Looking for the 151 untraceable UK returnees


BBMP has tall task of tracing those whose mobile phones have gone off the radar


Just as the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) would have thought of taking a breather from all the heavy-duty contact tracing they had to do, here comes the big task: To trace 151 returnees to the city from the UK since December 7, who have gone ‘missing’.

BBMP’s chief medical officer Dr Vijayendra told Bangalore Mirror, “These 151 people are yet to be traced as their phone numbers are either switched off or not traceable. However, by Sunday, we will get a clear picture and we can come to the conclusion as to how many UK returnees to Bengaluru have actually been traced.”

Ever since the news of the outbreak of a new strain of coronavirus was reported in the UK, we have been on the lookout for UK returnees. The Centre subsequently banned flights to and from the UK from December 22 midnight till December 31.



The Karnataka Government had decided to trace all the passengers who had arrived in Bengaluru and Mangaluru airports from the UK from December 7. The district surveillance officers have been asked to trace, test and place such people under home quarantine. Those who test positive in the RT-PCR test are to be placed under hospital isolation. The positive samples have been sent for molecular testing and the results are expected to be out either on Sunday or Monday.

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As per statistics from BBMP, around 1,512 people had returned from the UK to the city. Out of them, 542 have been tested of which 11 have tested positive. Around 47 have travelled from Bengaluru to other districts of the state where they have been tested. However, around 151 people are yet to be traced so that they can be subjected to testing and the results of the rest of returnees are awaited. Among various zones in the city, Mahadevapura had 45 returnees, followed by East zone: 44, RR Nagar: 22, South: 14, West:11, Yelahanka: 6, Dasarahalli: 5 and Bommanahalli: 4 are yet to be traced.

Health minister Dr K Sudhakar said his department was coordinating with the union home ministry regarding prevention and containment of the new variant and will soon come up with guidelines. He told reporters on Saturday that there will be new guidelines for new year celebrations and he will conduct a meeting with the Home Department regarding this soon.

In Karnataka, 1,434 passengers have been tested and 23 have tested positive while 908 have tested negative and results of 503 are awaited. “The positive samples have been sent to NIMHANS for gene sequencing to find out whether it is the new strain. This process needs 48 hours. Once we get the reports it will be sent to the central government,” Dr Sudhakar explained.



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Sagar Biswas

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