Assam Finance and Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on May 13 informed that 6 buses that set out from Delhi ferrying 163 students from Assam has finally reached Guwahati earlier today. Additionally, a single bus carrying 24 cancer patients and their attendants has also arrived in Guwahati.
The Minister, who was flanked by Minister of State Pijush Hazarika, Rajya Sabha MP Biswajit Daimary and other officials, discussed the 14-day mandatory process with the returnees.
Pleased to share that 6 buses from Delhi with 163 students onboard & one bus from Chennai with 24 cancer patients & attendants have arrived in Guwahati today. Received them & discussed the 14-day mandatory quarantine process which they need to observe now. #AssamCares pic.twitter.com/yiWl2t2wv4— Himanta Biswa Sarma (@himantabiswa) May 13, 2020
Sarma, who took to Twitter to announce this development, wrote, "Pleased to share that 6 buses from Delhi with 163 students onboard & one bus from Chennai with 24 cancer patients & attendants have arrived in Guwahati today. Received them and discussed the 14-day mandatory quarantine process which they need to observe now."
On Mandatory Quarantine:
Assam Finance and Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma yesterday said that "strict quarantine" will be necessary for people returning from other parts of India amid the easing of lockdown restrictions. Stating that only the symptomatic people will be tested, Sarma said that the Centre has prescribed a quarantine period of 9-14 days for those coming in from other states.
Sarma said that after visiting 10,000 villages to check people for symptoms of the coronavirus, doctors discovered that 7,782 people are suffering from fever. "We have to test them. They do not have coronavirus, but we have to test them as per protocol. We have to take swabs of both these people and also those of people . Thus, it will not be possible to test everyone; we can only test the symptomatic patients", Sarma said. The Minister said that the people coming in from other parts have to be prepared to stay in quarantine for a period of 14 days.
Adding that people will be quarantined in schools and colleges, Sarma said that the PHE department is currently engaged in trying to better facilities. Sarma also informed that when a person is sent to quarantine at home, the entire house will be considered a 'containment zone' and the entire family will have to stay indoors for the duration of the quarantine period.
It is pertinent to mention here that for the first time since the lockdown was clamped across the country, a passenger train is arriving in Assam. The train, which will run from New Delhi to Dibrugarh, set off on May 12, the day when the Indian Railways once again re-opened its services for passengers.
Update: The train will reach the Kokrajhar Railway Station around 6:30 pm. Ten passengers will get down at the station and five of them will leave for Guwahati.