Srinagar, Mar 18:With Kashmir grappling to keep coronavirus at bay, locals in a Pulwama village Wednesday staged a protest against the arrival of hoards of non-local labourers in the village fearing the same could further increase the chances of an outbreak.

The protesters demanded that a medical team should be sent immediately to screen the non-local labourers.

A local news agency Kashmir News Trust reported that a large number of protesters hit the roads in Zasoo village of Pulwama. They said that over 40 non-local labourers from Bihar and Nepal arrived in the village a day ago and all of them are staying in the rented building of one Farooq Ahmed Bhat.

Most of the labourers, as per the news agency, showed symptoms like fever, cough and flu.

“There are apprehensions that some of them may be suffering from coronavirus,” the news agency reported.

The locals, as per the agency, said that non-local labourers are arriving in Kashmir without any screening and this has posed greater risk to their lives.

The protesters demanded that these labourers should be quarantined and screened. They said in non-local labourers are coming in hoards in the district and negligence on part of the government can be gauged from the fact nobody asks these non-local labourers to get screened.

“The locals warned of consequences in case district administration doesn’t take measures,” KNT reported.

When contacted District Development Commissioner, Pulwama, Raghav Langar was quoted saying by the news agency that proper surveillance teams are being sent to different villages of the district who are monitoring the situation and screening the non-local labourers.

“These teams are looking for symptoms and we have already directed the building owners to quarantine those people with Coronavirus symptoms in their own buildings. Our screening teams are present at entry points including Panzgam, Kakapora, Pampore and proper screening of non-local labourers is being done,” he said.

Langer, as per KNT, admitted that 100% screening is not possible at railway stations but added that they are taking all measures to curb this virus from spreading.

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