A family wearing masks in Mumbai during the coronavirus outbreak
A family wearing masks in Mumbai during the coronavirus outbreak

Mumbai: Even as the number of new coronavirus cases reported in the city crossed the 100 mark on two consecutive days, with the highest single day count for Mumbai (106 cases) being recorded on Wednesday, data from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) reveals that six of its 24 administrative wards account for the majority of the city’s COVID-19 cases.

These six wards cover areas such as Worli, Prabhadevi, Elphinstone, Malabar Hill, Andheri, Bandra, Byculla and Malad. According to latest ward-wise data released by the BMC on Wednesday, of the 589 COVID-19 positive cases analysed on April 7, 347 (59 %) have been detected from these mentioned areas.

The data reveals that the highest number of cases in a ward, at 133 positive cases, was from G-South ward, which reported an almost 71 per cent spike in COVID-19 cases in a single day. The ward had reported 78 cases till afternoon on April 6. Of the 106 new cases reported in the city on Wednesday, 51 were reported from G-South ward.

The G-South ward includes areas like Worli, Haji Ali, Mahalaxmi Racecourse, Lower Parel, Currey Road, Elphinstone Road and Saat Rasta. Most parts of this ward fall under Maharashtra Tourism Minister Aditya Thackeray's Worli Assembly constituency.

The majority of the COVID-19 cases in G-South ward have been found in the Elphinstone Road area, Worli Koliwada and Prabhadevi, which is why hundreds of residents there have been home quarantined or admitted to isolation wards in hospitals.

According to BMC data, the G-South ward is followed by D, E and K-West wards, where 59, 46 and 43 COVID-19 patients have been found so far, respectively.

Three of these wards are in south-central Mumbai, while the K-West ward covers areas in the western suburbs such as Andheri and Vile Parle. According to the data, four other wards -- H-East, PNorth, K-East and M-West-- have 33, 32, 27 and 23 COVID19 patients, respectively. The B ward (Dongri and Princess Dock areas), which has a low population, also has the lowest number of five positive cases.

A, B and C wards in South Mumbai and T ward in North East Mumbai have less than seven cases each. The civic body has demarcated as many as 281 containment zones in the city, where at least one or more positive or suspected cases of COVID-19 have been found. Restrictions have been put on the movement of people in these zones, to prevent the spread of infection outside these zones.

The BMC is also battling hard to contain the spread of the virus in the city’s densely populated slums, such as in Dharavi. “The cases are increasing as the number of lab tests are increasing. We have started fever clinics in every ward where people with symptoms can report. We have also started organising camps for people in containment zones, for people in slums.

The good thing is that because of our action, cases are coming to light early,” said a senior BMC official, who did not wish to be named. “Without testing, the same number of cases would be reported later. However, by that time it would be too late, and the infection would have spread to a greater number of people.

We are containing the spread as much as we can, which is a tough thing to do in densely populated areas,” the official added. Meanwhile, Assistant Municipal Commissioner of E ward, Alka Sasne, has been transferred to the Removal of Encroachments (RE) department with immediate effect on April 7. E ward has the second-highest number of Covid 19 cases among all 24 BMC administrative wards. The transfer order comes after local corporator of Mandanpura, and Bhiwandi MLA, Rais Shaikh had alleged negligence on the part of BMC ward office in isolating families, relatives and other high-risk contacts of Covid-19 positive patients in the area.

Shaikh had also alleged that the local ward office had been playing down cases. Senior officials refused to comment on the development. Mrudula Ande has replaced Sasne as Assistant Municipal Commissioner E ward.

Sasne, meanwhile, has been entrusted the task of verifying and supervising the work of contact tracing, containment zones and institutional quarantining in slums and slum-like areas across all wards. She will report to the Deputy Municipal Commissioner (Special) on this.

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