Using technology for effective containment

The Covid-19 pandemic has been spreading fast and governments across the globe are doing everything they can to contain it. The first positive case of coronavirus appeared in district Barabanki in the first week of April. A person who has recently returned from Delhi had tested positive – and this set in motion whole new protocols. The village Melaraiganj (Tehsil: Sirauli Gauspur) was completely sealed off and sanitized. A group of sixteen teams comprising ASHAs, Angadwadis, Lekpals, Constables etc. conducted a house-to-house survey of the entire village within a few hours: this meant 561 houses and 5876 people. A total of 18 individuals were identified as high risk and subsequently institutionally quarantined.

The major challenge for the administration was the effective implementation of the curfew. An innovative solution was thought of. There were board examination centres near that village, where CCTVs had earlier been installed for the examinations. It was felt that they would provide an effective deterrent for keeping people indoors. A total of 11 CCTVs were installed at important check points within the village. The feed from these cameras was available on a mobile phone as well. This ensured that we had a 24*7 check on the movement in the village. Some retailers and hawkers were earmarked for door-to-door delivery of essential goods.
The 18 people and close contacts of the positive case all came out negative in the tests later. Also, there were no more positives found in the village or elsewhere. This model of containment was widely appreciated as it leveraged technology for an efficacious outcome.

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