Russian Tourists Defy Quarantine Period, Sent for Isolation

Guwahati, Mar 26 (PTI) Assam Police on Thursday sent two Russian tourists with "home quarantine" stamp on their hands to an isolation facility after they were caught sitting by the roadside.

The tourists, a man and a woman, were supposed to be in self-quarantine for 14 days in their hotel but they did not complete the term.

"After they were spotted sitting at a bus stand on arterial GS Road here, our team immediately called an ambulance and they were sent for quarantine at a facility set up by the Health Department at a hotel," Guwahati Police Commissioner Munna Prasad Gupta told PTI.

There is no crime or legal angle involved in the case and they have valid visas, he said.

"We have already connected them with the Russian Embassy, which will take care of them from now on," Gupta said.

Earlier during the day, Assam Health and Family Welfare Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said there is no positive case in Assam as of now out of 210 samples tested so far.

Markets, offices and other places of interest are mostly closed and vehicles off the road across Assam on Thursday, the second day of the nationwide lockdown imposed to check the spread of novel coronavirus.

However, at several places people defied the lockdown and ventured out, prompting the police to use force to make them return home.

Opposition leader in Assam Assembly Debabrata Saikia wrote to Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal expressing concern that a section of police personnel are assaulting and harassing people who were out on the road.

Saikia, in a letter to Sonowal, said the ongoing lockdown is necessary for public well-being but both the central and state governments have given permission for citizens to move out of home in case of any emergency and for purchasing groceries and medicines.

"Unfortunately, many personnel of the Assam Police are displaying a tendency to beat up and/or humiliate civilians first, and ask questions later", the Congress leader said.

Even a national emergency cannot justify such blatant violation of a civilian's basic human right of living with dignity, Saikia wrote in the letter.

He urged the CM to instruct police personnel to treat people on the streets with due courtesy and "they should make proper enquires before taking action against anyone, and that too as per law. On no account should any civilian be beaten up".

Immediate arrangements should be made to ensure that people under lockdown can continue to procure vegetables and fish, he said.

The opposition leader also appreciated the relief package announced by the Centre on Thursday to mitigate the effects of the three-week nationwide lockdown.

Meanwhile, the Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL) said it is operating round the clock with bare minimum staff manning operations in its Refinery and two Marketing Terminals in Numaligarh and Siliguri.

The Company is operating round the clock with bare minimum staff manning operations in its Refinery and two Marketing Terminals in Numaligarh and Siliguri, said NRL Deputy General Manager (Corporate Communication) Madhuchanda Adhikari on Thursday.

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