Kohima: Nagaland reported its first confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19) late on Sunday night after Assam health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma announced that a man from Dimapur had tested positive at the Gauhati Medical College & Hospital (GMCH) in Guwahati.
Nagaland’s health minister S Pangnyu Phom later confirmed the development and a day later even requested chief minister Neiphiu Rio to notify a total lockdown in the state, particularly in Dimapur.
However, if one were to check the latest official count of positive cases issued by the respective states, the report of the man is nowhere to be seen.
While Assam Himanta Biswa Sarma in his latest tweet said that the state’s count of positive cases now stands at 31 — it doesn’t include the patient from Dimapur — an official update from the state’s health department on Monday night said that no positive results of COVID-19 have been received as of 4 pm on April 13. Up to 111 samples in total were sent from the state for testing, out which 74 resulted negative. The results of the remaining 37 samples that were sent on Monday are still awaited, it said.
Another update from the home commissioner claimed that as of 5 pm on Monday, 36 samples –22 samples from Kohima and 14 samples from Dimapur— were collected in connection with the patient from Dimapur who tested positive in Guwahati.
Assam has so far reported 31 positive cases of COVID-19 in the state. Minister Sarma made the announcement of the 31st confirmed case through Twitter late on Monday at 11.55 pm, hours after he announced that a man who was referred from a private hospital in Dimapur had tested positive on Sunday.
Sarma also took to Twitter to announce the 30th COVID-19 confirmed case of the state on Monday at 9.15 am, bringing the total to 30, which is excluding the man from Nagaland who tested positive in Assam.
Now, with 31 COVID-19 cases in Assam and no positive case in Nagaland, the count of the Dimapur resident who tested positive in Assam is nowhere in inclusion. So, which state is to count for the first COVID-19 patient from Nagaland who tested positive in Assam?
The health department’s update said that 284 persons in the state are under home quarantine, 53 persons under facility quarantine and 5612 persons out of quarantine. Phek is so far the only district in the state with no persons under quarantine. A total of 918 persons were screened on Monday.
Abhijit Sinha, home commissioner, on Monday evening said that the patient who was referred from Dimapur to Guwahati was tested COVID-19 positive on Sunday at GMCH and is currently under treatment there.
The patient had returned to Dimapur by Air India Flight No 709 from Kolkata on March 24 and contact tracing has been completed for all his co-passengers who were on the same flight from Kolkata, he said. Sinha added that all members of the joint family of the patient have been already shifted to the Government quarantine Centres. As of 4 pm on Monday, 19 persons are under facility quarantine and none under home quarantine. The parents and family members of the patient who are currently in Guwahati are undergoing necessary tests.
Sinha revealed that the patient is a resident of Marwari Patti in Dimapur, and that the area along with Murgi Patti and GS Road have been sealed by the district administration and the police. The wholesale market on GS Road in Dimapur and retail shops at Marwaripatti and Ghorapatty will remain closed until further orders, he said.
Zion Hospital in Dimapur, where the patient had received treatment before leaving for Guwahati, has been sealed and the doctors, nurses, all other staff of the hospital and their family members who came into direct and indirect contact with the patient have also been quarantined.
Taking to Twitter on Monday evening, Pangnyu said that the condition of the first patient from Dimapur who tested positive at GMCH is improving. He also clarified that his father’s sample has tested negative after the first test. He further thanked the frontline workers of Assam who are taking care of the patient.