Sri Lanka Defence Secretary says more than 170 returnees skipped quarantine
ECONOMYNEXT – Secretary to the Ministry of Defence Kamal Gunaratne said more than 170 Sri Lankans who had returned from Italy and Korea have evaded the quarantine process.
In a media statement, he said, “There are over 170 passengers, who have returned to Sri Lanka from Korea and Italy, and are living with their families who have not been subjected to quarantine. As a precautionary measure, we need to get them into the screening process to detect positive cases to prevent coronavirus from spreading further.”
He said those who have not been subjected to the 14-days quarantine process have to call 119 and inform the Police about their details.
Yesterday the Defence Ministry requested all Sri Lankans who arrived from European countries, Iran, Italy and South Korea from March 1 to 15 to register themselves at the nearest Police station or inform the Police.
“The passengers, who had arrived from coronavirus-hit countries and are hiding to evade quarantine, will be instructed by the Police and SLA soldiers in the respective areas to submit the relevant information to them to be quarantined in their own houses by staying indoors,” Gunaratne added.
Also, he urged those arrived from coronavirus hit countries to come forward to declare that they had returned from European countries, including UK, Korea, Iran and Italy, said the public needs to support the government in its effort to contain the spreading of the virus.
“They will not be taken to quarantine centres but will be quarantine in their own homes with the help of the Public Health Inspectors,” he assured.
Guneratne added that if they still fail to heed to the request, legal action will be taken under the Quarantine and Prevention of Diseases Ordinance by the Police against them.(Colombo/Mar17/2020)
Reported by Imesh Ranasinghe
Kithmina Hewage- Institute of Policy Studies