Kohima: Following the coronavirus (COVID-19) scare, Nagaland chief secretary Temjen Toy on Friday reaffirmed that the state will put no restriction on the inflow of foreign tourists to the state, as the concerned department is closely monitoring the tourists.
An update from the DIPR said that the chief secretary held a video conference with all district commissioners and the commissioner Nagaland at his office on Friday to ensure that the state was prepared to tackle the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).
Toy emphasised on the importance of precautionary measures through preventive action and the preparedness of the state in the event of detecting COVID-19. Directing all districts to form the District Task Force to be headed by the deputy commissioner (DC), he said that the DCs will work in close coordination with the chief medical officers (CMOs) and all the other stakeholders including school education and district disaster management authority.
He also directed the directorate of health and family welfare to open an official Twitter handle to provide official updates on the epidemic and avoid rumours. He also warned that necessary action will be taken against anyone who spread rumours and fake news.
Toy also directed the concerned department to ensure that personal protective equipment (PPE) such as N-95 masks and thermal scanner to be made available to all the units. Further affirming that there will be no ban on foreign tourists, he said that the concerned department will be closely monitor the tourists.
Principal secretary, school education, Menukhol John also appealed all DCs to ensure that the advisory issued is being communicated to all the schools in their respective districts.
Meanwhile, principal director, H &FW, Dr Vizolie Suokhrie informed that Kohima and Dimapur have already identified quarantine locations wherein 50 beds have been placed to be used in the event of detection. He added that every district was prepared and that more places will be identified as quarantine locations in the districts other than Kohima and Dimapur. He also asked the villagers to report to the concerned authorities in the event of developing flu-like symptoms.
Dimapur DC Anoop Khinchi raised the need for more thermal scanners at the Dimapur airport and suggested the screening of all passengers arriving into the state. At present, only passengers having travel history from 12 majorly-affected countries are being scanned. He said that announcements will also be made at Dimapur railway station directing passengers with travel history from the 12 countries to go through the process of thermal scanning.
While no cases of COVID-19 is reported in the state, the department of health and family welfare highlighted various precautionary and preparative aspects of the virus during the meeting.