Covid cases surge in Leh, schools closed for 15 days

District reports highest single-day spike of 70 cases
Covid cases surge in Leh, schools closed for 15 days
Representational ImageFile/ GK

Srinagar: Amid a surge in the daily reported Covid-19 cases, the administration in Leh district of Ladakh Union Territory (UT), ordered temporary closure of schools for 15 days from Saturday.

In an order issued late Friday, District Magistrate Leh, Shrikant Suse said the decision was taken in view of reports of fresh Covid-19 cases in schools and in the interest of the public health and safety.

However, the order said, online classes would be encouraged with Covid Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).

“In view of reporting of fresh Covid-19 cases in schools and in the interest of the public health and safety, I Shrikant Balasaheb Suse, IAS, Chairman DDMA, Leh in exercise of the power conferred upon me under Section 34 of Disaster Management Act, 2005 do hereby order that all (Government/Private) schools including Residential Hostels in Leh district shall remain closed for imparting in-person classes with immediate effect for 15 days i.e., from September 18 till October 2, 2021, thereafter, the situation shall be reviewed again. However, online classes shall be encouraged with Covid SOPs," read the order.

Chief Medical Officer and Chief Education Officer Leh were directed to ensure that the students leaving from residential schools or hostels for their homes were mandatorily screened for RT-PCR test. “The students have to undergo home quarantine along with their family members for seven days irrespective of their results,” the order said, adding that “any violation of the directions shall invite strict action under relevant sections of DM Act, 2005.” Pertinently, consequent upon reporting of cluster of Covid-19 positive cases from the Druk Padma Karpo School, Shey area was declared as notified containment zone to contain the spread of Coronavirus.

Meanwhile, Ladakh Union Territory reported 71 fresh cases of Covid-19 on Saturday, the highest single-day rise in the past over two months, taking the overall infection tally to 20,702, officials said.

As per the media bulletin released by the Directorate of Health Services UT Ladakh, seventy one positive sample reports of Covid-19 were received including 70 from Leh while one positive sample report of Covid-19 was from Kargil . A majority of the new cases were detected from Druk Padma Karpo School Shey, prompting the District Development Commissioner (Leh) Shrikant Balasaheb Suse to notify the school campus as a containment zone to stop further spread of the infection, officials said.

The bulletin further mentioned that UT Ladakh discharged 3 patients yesterday. Two patients from Leh were discharged by CMO Leh and one from Kargil was discharged by CMO Kargil. With this, the total number of Covid-19 active cases in UT Ladakh went up to 109; 106 in Leh and 3 in Kargil district. Ladakh registered 207 Covid-related deaths -- 149 in Leh and 58 in Kargil -- since the outbreak of the pandemic last year.

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