COVID Cases Under-Reported In Odisha’s Rural Areas, Claims BJP

Bhubaneswar: With COVID-19 making its way to rural areas in Odisha, BJP on Monday urged the Odisha government to take preventive steps againt the surge.

Accusing the government of “ignorance” on COVID cases and deaths in rural areas, BJP leader Basanta Kumar Panda told the media that several people have been infected and some even succumbed to the virus in rural areas. However, the state government has no information because these incidents are under-reported, he alleged.

Panda said the state government must take immediate steps for for mass testing at every village to identify the infected persons.

The BJP leader attributed the rise in cases in rural areas to the return of migrant workers from .

He further said the government must set up temporary medical centres (TMCs) at the panchayat-level like it had done during the first wave of the pandemic last year.

“The state government must ensure that each TMC has quarantine facilities with adequate stock of medicines,” the Kalahandi MP said.

Panda said a COVID management committee should be formed at each panchayat for proper monitoring of the situation. The committees can comprise ASHA workers, political workers and senior citizens as members, he said.

“Since COVID-19 has now made its way to the rural pockets, the state government should focus on health care facilities in these areas,” he added.

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