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Enforcing home quarantine not easy task for panchayats


Margao: Keeping a watch on those entering the state and who are advised home quarantine is not an easy task for village panchayats roped in by the state government for the purpose.

Although monitoring the self-isolation   seems to be going well in smaller panchayats, bigger panchayats are finding it difficult to do their bit for enforcing the 14-day home quarantine.

Chief Minister Pramod Sawant had earlier this month announced engaging the panchayats to ensure that people coming to Goa isolate themselves at home for 14 days.

A WhatsApp group has been set up through which a daily list of persons entering the state are being submitted along with their contact numbers and addresses which is then circulated among panch members.

For Salcete, the list contains names, contact numbers, addresses and travel history of hundreds of people who are mostly from Benaulim, Navelim and Chinchinim, and who entered the state by flight or train.

However, there have been no details of those entering Goa from across the borders.

Smaller local bodies like Seraulim panchayat said the list is being shared with panch members, who are getting cooperation from villagers.

But bigger panchayats like Benaulim, which are getting lists that detail the arrival of over 11 people on a daily basis, are finding it difficult to keep a track on all the arrivals. Keeping an eye on people arriving Goa is an additional burden on these panchayats already strained by everyday functioning.

“Benaulim is a very big village with 11 wards. There are issues about keeping a watch on all those entering the village… the list that is being sent on WhatsApp doesn’t open on some mobile phones. Panch members are calling up on the numbers mentioned on the list exhorting the newly arrived people to obey the rules. We are urging other family members to maintain the quarantine period as they share a common toilet and bathroom. Most understand and follow the rules,” Benaulim sarpanch Ezlina Fernandes explained. 

In Carmona, where some seven people are being advised home quarantine, the villagers and the panchayat have received cooperation from the residents.

Carmona sarpanch Allwyn Jorge said the list they are getting contains names of those coming to the state by flights or trains. Those coming from across the borders in their vehicles are not named on the list.

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