Borders With Neighbouring States Too Huge To Man, Odisha CM To Speak To Sarpanchs Of 6798 GPs Tomorrow

Bhubaneswar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik will hold talks with representatives of 6798 gram panchayats through video conferencing on Wednesday.

At the press briefing here on Tuesday, Chief Spokesperson of the Odisha government on COVID-19 Subroto Bagchi said sarpanchs had been delegated powers of the district collector to aid the fight against the virus and ensure mandatory quarantine of the returnees at the panchayats as it was impossible to seal the borders with West Bengal, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh.

He said Odisha shared over 3000-km border with the four neighbouring districts.  “Police can keep a vigil on movement on vehicles entering the state but not along the huge borders with forested areas,” he said.

Bagchi said that panchayats can be of immense help to monitor people returning to different villages from these states. “The CM will directly speak to the panchayat representatives tomorrow in this regard,” he added.

Earlier in the day, Revenue Divisional Commissioner (RDC), Central Division, Anil Kumar Samal, had informed the media that hundreds of Odia migrant workers had returned from West Bengal to the district in the past two months.

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