A 24-year-old employee named Chitra Mondal working in the accounts department of Beleghata ID and BG Hospital was reportedly denied entry in her village in Ranaghat in Nadia when she went to visit her mother and sister. A group of 100 villagers stopped the car provided by the hospital and told her that she could not visit her house. As such, Chitra had to spend the night at a relative’s place.
Denied entry to village
Chitra Mondal stated that she tried to pacify the villagers by informing them that she had followed sanitisation guidelines before reaching the village. However, the group was unmoved. “My mother and sister are fearing ostracism by the villagers. No one is interacting with them. I fear what will happen if they are not allowed to procure essential items from the grocery shops at the village,’’ Chitra sighed.
Deputy chief of the Noapara-Mushundi gram panchayat Nabin Chandra Mondal said that several villagers visited his house and asserted that they will not allow Chitra to enter the village. He reportedly tried to convince the villagers but the majority of them seemed resolute about their decision. It is important to mention that the woman works at a hospital that has been treating the maximum number of Coronavirus patients. This perhaps had triggered fears amongst the villagers about her presence in the village.
Difficulties for frontline workers
Case of ground-level healthcare workers and frontline staffers facing misbehaviour and even abuse by locals have been frequently surfacing since the coronavirus crisis started. Earlier, the news of staffers from Air India facing ostracisation had surfaced. Home Minister Amit Shah had earlier reacted strongly to the reports of AIIMS doctors facing misbehaviour by landlords and had stated that no landlord can ask doctors to vacate their homes. He had instructed police personnel to ensure safety and well being of doctors fighting the pandemic and had ordered the Delhi Police to take action against such landlords.