Migrants fall seriously ill after dinner at quarantine centre

Patna: Twelve migrants, including two women, fell seriously ill after having dinner at their quarantine centre in Sheikhpura of Bihar, an official said.

District programme manager Shyam Kumar Nirmal said the migrants had been lodged at the isolation facility in Karki under Ariyari police station area, about 25km from the district headquarters.

“On Thursday night, soon after having dinner they began to vomit and complain of severe abdominal pain. They were immediately rushed to a hospital where their condition is now stated to be stable”, Nirmal said.

Investigations are on to ascertain which item caused the food poisoning following which suitable action would be taken, he added.

More than 1.5 million migrants have returned to Bihar since the beginning of this month from places across the country where they had been stuck during the lockdown.

The State government is offering Rs 1,000 each to the returnees, inclusive of their train fares, following completion of a mandatory 14-day quarantine set up at district, block or panchayat levels.

Upkeep of many of these quarantine centres, including the quality of food served there, has been a matter of concern.

A PIL was recently filed in the Patna High Court seeking intervention in the matter.

Moreover, the State government has drawn flak over a recent communication whereby officials have been directed to ban the entry of journalists into these quarantine centres, understandably to check the spread of COVID 19 which has reported a very high incidence among migrants.

Opposition parties have, however, alleged that the move was aimed at preventing the condition of these quarantine facilities from getting exposed.