Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday asked the Centre to roll back an order directing all coronavirus patients in the Capital to visit quarantine centres for check-up. Kejriwal said that sending people to the quarantine facilities would be like a “15-day detention”, according to PTI.
Kejriwal also expressed concern over how patients running fever would stand in long queues at the quarantine facilities. “Earlier, medical teams would go to patients’ homes to examine them,” Kejriwal told reporters during his visit to a banquet hall that has been turned into a coronavirus care centre. “Now according to the Centre’s rules, patients have to stand in lines. I urge the Centre to withdraw this order.”
Earlier in the day, Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia had written to Union Home Minister Amit Shah and asked him to withdraw the order. Sisodia added that far from being a political fight about a “Kejriwal model versus Amit Shah model”, his request was an effort to implement a hassle-free system for the people.
Sisodia said he had earlier written to Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal about his request but received no response from him. On June 19, Baijal had issued an order making it compulsory for all coronavirus patients to be placed in institutional quarantine for five days. After receiving opposition from the Delhi government, which had called it an “arbitrary decision” that will lead to chaos, Baijal clarified that only those who do not require hospitalisation and do not have adequate facilities for home isolation would be required to undergo institutional isolation.
The Arvind Kejriwal-led government, then, issued a fresh order that said that coronavirus patients will merely be referred to Covid-19 care centres to determine whether they need institutional quarantine.
The Centre has stepped in to augment Delhi’s fight against the coronavirus amid an alarming increase in the number of cases. The home minister held several meetings with Delhi government over the last two weeks. Shah directed Kejriwal’s government to ramp up and testing and intensify supervision in containment zones. The Delhi government was also instructed to mark all containment zones afresh. On Wednesday, the Delhi government said it will screen all houses in the Capital by July 6 as a part of its new coronavirus response plan.
Delhi’s coronavirus tally on Wednesday crossed the 70,000-mark with 3,788 new cases and 64 deaths. With a total of 70,390 cases and a toll of 2,365, the Capital now has more infections than Mumbai, which has recorded 69,625 cases, including 3,962 deaths, so far.