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News Entry# 413838
Jul 11 (15:33) COVID-19 cases among railway employees rise with partial resumption of train services; 86 fatalities so far (mumbaimirror.indiatimes.com)
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News Entry# 413838  Blog Entry# 4666582   
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With the partial resumption of train services, Covid-19 cases in the Central and Western Railway have risen rapidly. Around a dozen new cases, including a motorman, were reported among the railway fraternity of Mumbai city within the first 10 days of this month.So far 875 railway employees, their family members, including retired employees of the Central and Western Railway, have tested positive for the virus. Out of this, 86 succumbed to the pandemic infection. These fatalities include 23 personnel from the Western Railway and 63 from the Central Railway.Of the 875 cases, 313 are from Western Railway and the remaining 560 are from Central Railway and all of them were admitted to the Western Railway’s Jagjivanram Hospital, which had been declared as COVID hospital in April .Dharavi: WHO praises efforts to contain COVID-19 in Asia's largest slum"There are many examples from around the world that have shown that even if the...
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outbreak is very intense, it can still be brought back under control," said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO DG.A senior Western Railway (WR) official said that out of 313, only 142 are working employees of the WR. The remaining are either retired employees or family members of the serving employees. Similarly, out of 560 positive cases in the Central Railway (CR), around 250 are working employees, while the rest are either retired employees or family members of the employees.However both zonal railways claimed that they are following all rules and regulations and taking the utmost care to avoid the spread of COVID-19 among the railway workers, as well as passengers.But workers unions are alleging that there has been a surge in the number of railway employees getting infected with COVID-19 since the partial resumption of train services.Asked about reasons, J.G.Mahurkar, General secretary of Western Railway Mazdoor Sangh (WRMS), said " Most of the cases are related to the frontline staff because those staff--RPF, Tickets checkers and booking clerks-- directly come in contact with the general public.Similarly, Venu Nair, General secretary of the National Railway Mazdoor Union (CR) said,"The state government has capped just 15 to 30 % attendance at their offices, but in the railways, nearly most of the field staff is working because of partial resumption of train services."Stand-Up comedian faces wrath, Shiv Sena MLA Pratap Sarnaik demands arrest for cracking jokes on Shivaji MaharajThe video prompted Sarnaik to write a letter to Home Minister Anil Deshmukh demanding her immediate arrest. However Shivaji Sutar, CPRO, CR said, "There is no relation between resumption of train services and the hike in the number of cases.""We are taking every possible step to ensure social distancing for Railway employees and passengers. We have initiated Rail Parivar Dekh Rekh Muhim to take care of our Railway family. We are providing masks, sanitisers and all other safety equipment to all the staff" said Sutar.On the other hand, GVL Satya Kumar, Divisional Railway Manager of Western railways, Mumbai Central Division, didn't respond to the calls and text messages in this regard sent by Mirror, besides repeated attempts made to contact him.According to railway officials, out of the 90 fatalities due to COVID-19 infection, only 20 were railway staffers, while the remaining were the family members or retired railwaymen.Since July 1, there have been four deaths of railway employees and their family members who were working on both Central and Western Railways due to Covid-19. They were working either at the workshops to repair the coaches or in the back-offices to keep the rail network running.Time distancing to help create social distancingMy elder brother died a couple of years ago. He was hit by a train at the edge of a packed Mumbai railway platform, trying to get to work. Some months later, my personal assistant was crushed to death in a rush-hour stampede into a railway station. Both in Mumbai. Both on the way to work. The latest case pertains to a father (retired)-son duo from Malad who worked for the railway workshops. The son worked at the Lower Parel workshop while the father retired from Matunga workshop. Railwaymen in the know of the development said that the father was first to be detected with Covid-19 during the third week of June and later the son too tested positive for the infection. “The father sadly passed away in the fourth week of June while our colleague (son) died on July 3,” said a railwayman from WR.In another case, an employee from the Parel workshop passed away on July 4. There is another case of an employee working for the Divisional Railway Manager, Mumbai Central, who too succumbed to Covid-19. After this, from July 2, 18 employees who came in contact with him, have been quarantined.The wife of a rail employee, who was admitted to the JRH hospital along with her husband; has also passed away recently. The husband works for the Mahalaxmi EMU workshop and is fighting for his life in the hospital.However doctors at the Jagjivanram Hospital claimed that the recovery rate is very good. "Our recovery rate is more than 75 percent. Till date, we have successfully managed to cure and discharge hundreds of patients. We have also procured 30 vials of Remdesivir and more shall be availed in the coming days,” said a senior doctor from the Jagjivan Ram hospital on condition of anonymity.
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