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Coronavirus explodes in rural Madhya Pradesh, urban scene too worsens

Villages in Hoshangabad and Niwari districts have escaped the corona fury so far

Saturday June 13, 2020 11:22 PM, IANS

Madhya Pradesh Corona Update

Bhopal: While Madhya Pradesh Health Minister Narottam Mishra and Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan are patting themselves for containing the corona spread in the state, the epidemic has marched into the rural areas at an alarming rate. The urban scenario continues to be even more worrying than it has been since the lockdown days.

With a primitive healthcare infrastructure in the rural areas, the state will have a herculean task to deal with the outbreak, according to the latest panchayat and rural department report.

Official statistics have not been put in the public domain so far. But sources in the panchayat department reveal that 50 out of 52 districts are in the grip of the epidemic.

Large-scale migration of the labour force has only aggravated the problem with 951 persons testing positive in 462 villages of 184 tehsils of the 50 districts. Thirty-two deaths were recorded till Friday night. The migrant and non-migrant villagers have almost equally borne the brunt of the epidemic.

Also Read | 51 of 52 districts in virus grip, MP struggles to better its Corona record

Among the 951 patients in rural areas, 479 were labourers, including migrants who returned to the state following the lockdown. As per the data, 336 people were infected in rural Madhya Pradesh on May 21 and of them, 130 were labourers and 206 were other villagers.

Meanwhile, additional chief secretary of the Panchayat and Rural Development Department, Manoj Shrivastava, said the state government was working hard to contain the viral spread in the rural areas.

Over 14.82 lakh migrant labourers had returned to their homes from other states so far, he said. At present, 12,04,315 migrant labourers and villagers are home quarantined or lodged in isolation centres, the official said.

The Chief Minister had on Thursday spoken to village heads about the possible effect on the rural areas after massive movement of people from other states to or through Madhya Pradesh.

462 villages of MP now face Corona fury

Swab samples of 29,881 people have been collected for testing from rural areas of the state so far. The infection, which was detected in 186 villages on May 21, has spread to 462 villages in just 22 days, the report revealed.

Villages in Hoshangabad and Niwari districts have escaped the corona fury so far.

Villages in Indore district have recorded the highest number of rural Covid-19 cases with 90 persons testing positive for the infection, followed by 51 in the villages of Khargone, 50 in Bhind, 43 in Neemuch, 42 in Gwalior and 41 in Burhanpur. At least 14 people have succumbed to the infection in eight villages of Indore, with six deaths reported from Baank village alone.

On the urban front, Indore and Bhopal districts reported 120 corona positive cases on Saturday. Indore, which seemed to be flattening the curve, was back to the old form. The city reported 57 cases to Bhopal's 63. Neemuch with 12 cases was another district with figures touching the double digit. The other districts recorded a marked decline on Saturday.

The state reported 198 cases on Saturday with seven fatalities. The overall count of positive cases in the state has reached 10,641 with 447 deaths. The health bulletin reported 7,377 recoveries till Saturday.

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