Early Times Report
Doda, May 31: The Doda district administration on Sunday launched an initiative to test vegetable/fruit vendors and wholesalers for COVID-19. The vendors were notified about the initiative yesterday, and a total of 51 people reached the sample collection centre in the Doda during the early hours on Sunday. “We collected the samples of around 51 people for COVID-19 testing. If someone tests positive, we will isolate and treat that person. We will conduct the sampling of butchers tomorrow,” said Dr Safia Khan.
Authorities said that being a green zone, shops are allowed to be opened for a specific time, but with the opening of shops and increase in the flow of goods transported from Jammu, it was necessary to keep a check that coronavirus doesn’t spread through the goods.
“As per the guidelines by J-K Health Department, we have to conduct random sampling of probable cases. Under that, we are testing vegetable vendors, milkmen, butchers, etc. Targets have been given to each block for testing so that we can evaluate random spread,” said Dr Sagar. “Since their social contact is more, there is a risk of community spread, and in order to avoid that random sampling is necessary. Earlier, also we take samples of truck drivers, to get a clear picture of the situation,” he added. Liaquat Ali, a vendor, appreciated the initiative of random sampling by the district administration.
“It is a very nice set-up, as our social contact during the lockdown was more. I would request those not coming for testing to get themselves tested for everyone’s safety,” said Waseem Shazad Wani, a vegetable vendor.