On Tuesday, the Ministry of Home Affairs has said in a statement that the Inter-Ministerial Central Teams (IMCT) appointed by the Centre to make an on-spot assessment of Coronavirus situation has received support, with the exception of West Bengal, from local administration and State Governments in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, and Maharashtra.
The MHA stated that the IMCT which visited Kolkata and Jalpaiguri are being stopped from visiting the designated areas. They were reportedly also barred from interacting with the local health workers. IMCT members are also being restricted from making an on-spot assessment of the Coronavirus crisis in the state. The central Government has also written a letter to the State asking for the enforcement of April 19 order besides facilitating the assessment team in doing their job.
#WATCH Inter-Ministerial Central Team visiting Kolkata&Jalpaiguri, West Bengal aren’t receiving cooperation from State govt&local administration. They’re being stopped from visiting the areas¬ being allowed make on-spot assessment of situation:Home Ministry pic.twitter.com/MgvwwKVt04— ANI (@ANI) April 21, 2020
Mamata Banerjee Defiant
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had yesterday questioned the formation of the Inter-Ministerial Central Teams (IMCT) constituted by the Central Government for quick redressal of coronavirus crisis in states claiming that it is ‘not consistent with the spirit of federalism’.
Earlier, the Central government had constituted 6 IMCT to make an on-spot assessment of the coronavirus situation and issue necessary directions to state authorities for its redressal. The IMCT would also submit its report to the central government in the larger interest of the general public. These teams would visit West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, and Rajasthan to ensure that lockdown is implemented there.
Concerns over West Bengal’s handling of coronavirus situation
In a video shared by Babul Supriyo, BJP MP from Asansol, a person admitted to an isolation ward in MR Bangur Hospital in Tollygunge in West Bengal narrates the deplorable conditions under which suspected Coronavirus patients have been quarantined. 45 seconds into the video, the man holding the camera points towards a dead body lying unattended on a bed for over hours, while other patients looked on.