Wed, 08 Jul, 2020

Editor's Column

Poor Quarantine Facilities Stimulating Spread of Virus and Causing Dreadful Crimes

22-Jun-2020

By Aryama Upadhyaya

Image Source: Routine of Nepal Banda

A heinous crime was committed in Lamkichuha Municipality-1 of Kailali district. A 31-year-old woman, a migrant worker returning home from India's tech hub of Bengaluru, was sexually assaulted in a school used as a local quarantine centre. Three men were suspected to be involved in the gang rape and were taken into custody by the police. The case gets dark when the identities of the arrestees were brought into light. The three men were young Kailali locals that were ironically involved to ensure the health and safety of the quarantine facilities i.e. a health worker and volunteers.  

Although, the foundation of the crime was the sick mentality of the three males, one cannot deny the fact that the negligence shown by the government in response to the covid-19 pandemic is also a major contributor to the criminal activity committed. Hence, such a poor state of quarantine facilities is becoming a breeding ground for such horrifying acts.

Due to such terrifying conditions, youths from all over the country are participating in peaceful protests. Their demands range from a proper quarantine facility to increasing the use of PCR tests in detecting coronavirus. To our dismay, the government responded with water cannons, teargas to drive out the crowds. Subsequently, the government received backlash from citizens and has made provision to expand the rate of PCR testing but is yet to respond well on the quarantine facilities.   

Another interesting case to reinstate the carelessness of the government is when foreign returnees aren’t properly checked for coronavirus cases. Some are referred for RDT test whereas some are allowed to return back home with a promise to keep – Self Quarantine. As people aren’t on a constant check by the authority with limited or no contact tracing, it’s not much of a surprise to see the cases surging from two digits to three digits in a limited time frame.  

The future is as bleak as the present if appropriate steps are not taken on time as people will start avoiding quarantine facilities due to such criminal activities being recorded and dodging away from such will just intensify the risk of the covid-19 infection. Therefore, the government must play an active role in controlling the crime as well as the virus.

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