COVID-19 in Mumbai: Wards see fall in containment zones in slums

The number of slums marked as containment zones in Borivali Worli, Bandra, Malabar Hills and Napean Sea Road have drastically fallen in the past two months. Presently, the municipal wards R-Central (Borivali), H-West (Bandra), G-South (Worli) and D ward (Malabar Hill and Napean Sea Road) have less than 20 slum areas marked as containment zones. However, the number of sealed buildings in these wards is more than 150.

The G-South ward has zero containment zones. However, nearly 116 buildings are sealed in this ward as per the latest data provided by the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC). The R-Central ward has 654 sealed buildings, which is the highest across Mumbai, and has only 10 slum areas marked as containment zones.

Civic health officials stated, although 80 per cent of these cases are now being reported from high rises, there is a chance that those living in the slum areas are not getting themselves tested.

"Nowadays, 90 per cent of the detected cases are asymptomatic. It can be possible that those living in the slums are not getting themselves tested as they are not experiencing symptoms," a civic health official told the Free Press Journal.

Recently, in a sero survey report conducted in the slums of Cuffe Parade, it was found out that 75 per cent of the residents had already developed antibodies. The survey also stated that 40 per cent of the residents were reluctant to undergo blood tests for the survey. The survey was conducted by Eyebitis foundation and municipal corporator Harshita Narwekar.

Dr Nishant Kumar, who led the survey, had told the Free Press Journal that nearly 75 per cent of the residents had been infected with COVID in some point of time. Speaking on the matter, the health official stated, "People in slum areas are quite apprehensive. Most of them suffer from the social stigma that if one of them is positive, they might be cornered in their society, which is why many of them don't get their tests done."

The official also stated that, unlike those living in slum areas, people living in residential buildings are quite proactive, which is why many of them are getting tested, even if they experience cough for a couple of days. He further added that there could be a possibility that most of the people living in slums may have developed herd immunity as many of these people live together in one room.


No of sealed buildings and slum areas marked as containment zones in each ward.

R central ward (Borivali) 654 sealed buildings, 10 containment zones

H West ward (Bandra, Mahim, Khar, Santacruze West) 182 sealed buildings, 2 containment zones

G south ward (Worli, Prabhadevi) 116 sealed buildings, zero containment zones

D ward (Malabar Hills, Napean Sea road) 147 sealed buildings, 9 containment zones.

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Free Press Journal