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How Nizamuddin markaz became Covid-19 hotspot; more than 8,000 attendees identified

As many as 13 people who had attended the Tablighi Jamaat congregation at Nizamuddin Markaz in Delhi were on Wednesday picked from a mosque in Barwalan area in Uttar Pradesh's Moradabad. The people who attended the event are being aggressively pursued after reports that many of them are the likely carriers of the coronavirus disease Covid-19.

Amit Kumar Anand, Meerut Superintendent of Police, said,"They are all from Assam. They will be placed under quarantine."

A man from Manipur, who attended the congregation last month, has tested positive for Covid-19, taking the total number of coronavirus cases in the state to two, Chief Minister N Biren Singh said on Thursday.

Several state governments are tracing and identifying all those who attended the gathering. A large number of people in different states have already been placed under quarantine as a precautionary measure.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said on Wednesday that a social media campaign has been launched by the state government to identify all those who participated in the Jamaat gathering.

"The situation is under control and there is no need for any concern. A purposeful campaign is being run particularly on social media targeting those who attended Nizamuddin Markaz gathering in Delhi and their community," Vijayan said.

The number of Covid-19 cases in India soared over 2,000 on Wednesday, fuelled largely by infections linked to the March event of the Jamaat that emerged this week as the biggest domestic source of the disease in the country.

According to a tally of numbers released by 25 states and union territories, close to 8,500 people have been identified as having been to the group's headquarters in the Nizamuddin area, prompting authorities to intensify efforts to trace them.

Health workers from the integrated diseases surveillance programme have decided to launch aggressive testing; these workers will start going door-to-door from Thursday.

As part of the testing, everyone within a 3 kilometre radius (focal area) of the building and in the buffer area (5 kilometre radius) will be screened for symptoms. Those who are symptomatic - a cough will do - will be tested.

Thus far, the congregation has been identified as being responsible for 358 infections and nine deaths.

(Inputs and image from theindianexpress.com)

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