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BMC starts targeted Covid testing in Mumbai over concerns of fresh spike after Diwali

Post-Diwali, BMC has intensified targeted coronavirus testing to gauge if there’s a surge in Covid-19 cases after the festivities. Sections of shopkeepers, hawkers, BEST drivers and restaurant staff are being tested for coronavirus.

November 25, 2020 UPDATED: November 25, 2020, 12:32 IST

Post-Diwali, BMC has intensified targeted coronavirus testing to gauge if there’s a surge in Covid-19 cases after the festivities. Sections of shopkeepers, hawkers, BEST drivers and restaurant staff are being tested for coronavirus.

The rationale behind these target groups is that they engaged in outdoor activities and came in direct contact with many people during the festivals.

These free Covid-19 RT-PCR and antigen test drives are being done in market areas such as Goregaon, Dadar and other parts of Mumbai. On Tuesday, one such camp was organised by D ward at a restaurant in Prathana Samaj and at a construction site.

“There was a testing camp in our market two days ago. Few people tested positive and isolated themselves as they were asymptomatic. We are following guidelines given by the BMC and police like wearing masks and avoiding crowds. We don’t allow customers to touch the products before buying,” said Sanjay Gupta a fruit vendor from Kelkar fruit market.

Three days after reporting over 1,000 coronavirus cases each day, Mumbai on Monday reported 800 cases. Maharashtra government has placed restrictions on travellers from New Delhi, Gujarat and Goa who will have to get tested before travelling to Mumbai.

Meanwhile, testing capacity in the city has been ramped up by BMC. “We have urged people to get themselves tested at the slightest of suspicion or symptoms. Active testing of target group helps trace infected patients and contain the virus,” said Assistant Municipal Commissioner, D-Ward, Prashant Gaikwad.

Maharashtra’s Covid task force had suggested BMC start aggressive testing in order to control the surge in new coronavirus cases post-Diwali.

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