In the wake of 47 prisoners, a jail staffer, and a contractor testing positive for coronavirus in district jail Anantnag, the district legal service authority (DLSA) here has asked the authorities to ensure strict implementation of protocols for the inmates.
The order in this regard has been issued by the Principal and District Sessions judge Parvez Ahmad Kachroo who is also the chairman of DLSA Anantnag.
"Deputy Commissioner Anantnag/ chairman of district disaster management authority shall ensure that the lodging of prisoners should be strictly as per Covid19 protocols –social distancing and other established norms," the order reads.
It has further asked the district magistrate to keep a medical team available in the jail to meet any emergency.
"The municipal authorities are directed to sanitize the entire jail premises," the order said.
The legal service authority also expressed concern over the overcrowding of the jail.
"There are 249 prisoners/ staff members in the already overcrowded district jail and this office has repeatedly taken up the matter with concerned authorities for decongesting the jail premises," the order reads.
The DLSA emphasized on isolating the positive cases to prevent further spread of infection.
"DC Anantnag shall take immediate appropriate action to isolate the already affected inmates, put them in administrative quarantine and provide requisite facilities," the order added.
The samples of 229 inmates, staffers and mess staff of the jail were collected after the PSA detainee of Trehgam Kupwara – Zahoor Bhat, brother of JKLF founder Maqbool Bhat – was found positive for the virus.
Bhat had complained of chills following which he was taken to GMC Anantnag where his sample was collected.
He is undergoing treatment in the isolation ward of the hospital.
The other inmates who have tested positive include Muslim League vice-chairman Rafiq Ganai and religious cleric and vice-president Jamiat I Ahlihadees Mushtaq Ahmad Bhat Veeri.