Covid-19: CAPF witnesses a spike in infections; CRPF Delhi headquarters sealed

NEW DELHI: Forty-five paramilitaries tested Covid-19 positive on Sunday, bringing the total number to around 200, while the headquarters here was sealed after two employees contracted the disease, authorities said.

The new cases include a personal secretary to a CRPF officer and a bus driver transporting personnel working at the force's headquarters, they added.

The country's largest five-story CRPF paramilitary force sealed building, located here at the CGO complex on Lodhi Road, houses the central control room, operational and administrative wings, and the office of the Director General (DG), among others .

A driver connected to the CRPF headquarters tested positive for Covid-19. The headquarters is closed for sanitation until the task is completed, said a spokesman for CRPF, the country's largest paramilitary force.

An order issued by force said that a positive (case) was detected at the (headquarters) address, all officers and men working in the general direction are requested not to come to the office and work from home until then.

He said the central office will be closed until Tuesday.

A senior official said that CRPF authorities informed the district surveillance officer to initiate the required protocols according to medical guidelines, for the proper sealing of the building for a specified time.

All procedures will be followed. CRPF CEO A P Maheshwari has issued clear instructions that all Covid-19 guidelines must be strictly followed, he said.

They said a contact search exercise was conducted, after which more than 50 staff members who had direct or indirect contact with the two infected employees were quarantined.

The force has witnessed multiple cases of Covid-19, with at least 135 staff from its 31st Delhi-based battalion infected and a 55-year-old deputy inspector of the unit who succumbed to the disease last week.

According to the latest data, at least 144 people from the CRPF are positive for coronavirus in the country.

The five CAPFs are CRPF, BSF, ITBP, CISF and SSB. Its total strength is approximately 10 lakh

Two other paramilitary forces, also known as (CAPF), the BSF, and the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), reported an increase in their total number of infections.

Up to 25 more people tested positive for the disease on Sunday, bringing the overall number to 42, an official spokesman said.

All the new cases were reported from a unit of the 126th Force Battalion, deployed in the Jama Masjid and Chandni Mahal areas of the national capital in public order functions under the command of the.

This unit now has 31 positive cases of coronavirus.

The strong force of 2.5 lakh of personnel is primarily tasked with protecting Indian borders with Pakistan and Bangladesh, in addition to fulfilling a variety of duties in the country's internal security domain.

At the ITBP, a recently retired 60-year-old police chief, who was still living on his campus, succumbed to a coronavirus infection on Sunday when 20 other members of the border surveillance force staff contracted the disease, authorities said.

They said that the official, who breathed for the last time, had comorbid conditions and lived in a force camp in the Tigri (Khanpur) area of ​​the national capital.

A total of 21 Indo-Tibetan border police staff members, including the deceased, have tested positive for COVID-19 so far, officials said.

While some of them were part of a unit (50th battalion) and helped the Delhi Police to maintain law and order, the rest were from the Tigri camp, they said.

The ITBP is a 90,000-strong force that is primarily tasked with protecting the Current Line of Control with China, in addition to providing other internal security tasks.