The densely populated Muslim Mochi Mohalla in Ajmer’s Dargah area in Rajasthan has emerged as the latest coronavirus hotspot in the state. In the last 24 hours, the area has reported 79 cases raising questions on the capacity of the state government to limit the spread of the coronavirus.
According to the reports, most of these confirmed cases of coronavirus have been reported from 11-15 houses in the area around the Ajmer Sharif Dargah. The area has since been sealed. The officials have said that the new cases can be traced back to a man who has a travel history to Bihar.
With these fresh cases, the overall tally of COVID-19 in the city has risen to 103 leaving Ajmer administration in a shock. The detection of a large number of positive cases in Muslim-dominated areas has forced the administration to plan random testing in these areas.
Lived in congested rooms, similar socio-economic background
The initial investigation by the health department revealed that all 79 patients were migrant workers living in congested rented accommodations in the densely populated area with narrow lanes and bylanes, a similar case to Ramganj in Jaipur.
“The way most cases have appeared from city’s one area, it is clear that we need to increase testing on the lines of Ramganj to detect positive cases,” said Sanjiv Maheshwari, additional principal of the Jawaharlal Nehru Hospital in Ajmer.
The densely populated Ramganj area in Jaipur was one of the initial hotspots in Rajasthan, where more than 30 positive cases had emerged.
A senior government official said that the entire families that are found to be positive lived in close to each other and shared the same socio-economic background. Most of the positive patients engaged in household works or worked as salesmen and in hotels and restaurants. Many of them had met other residents asking for food and other assistance during the lockdown.
Ajmer SP Kunwar Rastradeep said, “The area falls under four police stations and has been under curfew. Barricading of lanes and bylanes has been done in areas where people have a history of lockdown violations. Only government vehicles will be allowed to provide ration and vegetables to minimise the human to human contact.”