With the number of COVID-19 cases rising in West Bengal, Kolkata Police has written to Cricket Association of Bengal(CAB) President Avishek Dalmiya to use the iconic stadium Eden Gardens as a quarantine centre. The letter was sent on Friday, requesting for portions under the galleries to be used as a makeshift quarantine centre for Kolkata Police personnel.
“Kolkata Police is in urgent need of a large accommodation for setting up makeshift quarantine centre for Kolkata Police personnel with immediate effect,” read the letter sent by Joint Commissioner of Police. Many Police personnel on duty have contracted the COVID-19.
This follows an emergent meeting at Lal Bazar, the Kolkata Police headquarters which was attended by CAB officials too. This was followed by a joint inspection of Eden Gardens. CAB has donated Rs 25 lakh to the Chief Minister Relief Fund while Dalmiya has donated another Rs 5 lakh on an individual basis for the COVID-19 pandemic. CAB staff too had donated a day’s salary to the Chief Minister Relief Fund for the cause. The cricketing body had also shown willingness to offer Eden Gardens as a quarantine centre if needed.
The space under the gallery of blocks E,F,G,H and J along with provisions of the kitchen will be used as part of the makeshift quarantine facility. Space will be made available with no cost involved.
West Bengal has 8,881 active cases and 880 deaths recorded as of July 10, with 1,198 cases and 26 deaths reported in 24 hours. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee took stock of the rising cases and called for a strict lockdown for a week from July 9th in containment zones across the state, 28 of them being in Kolkata. Mamata had also written to the secretary in the Civil Aviation Ministry asking for domestic flights from 6 worst affected cities to be stopped, to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Following this, flight from Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Ahmedabad, Nagpur and Chennai has been stopped from the 6th to 19th July.