Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Storage level of all water sources depletes alarmingly

Further curtailment in water supply from April 8

Port Blair, Apr 7
   Due to deficit South West monsoon and complete failure of North East monsoon during 2019, the storage level of all water sources including the major sources Dhanikhari Dam has depleted alarmingly. The water level in Dhanikhari dam as of 6th April (against its full reservoir level of 66 mtrs) is at the lowest during the last 5-6 years and the same is detailed below:-
57.34 m
58.13 m
59.14 m
57.15 m
60.74 m
53.30 m
    As is evident from the above table, the current water level is lower by 7.30 mtrs compared to the corresponding period of last year. Daily reduction level is 15 cms and in view of this, existing water level at the dam can hardly sustain the supply till 12th of May 2020. On account of this, the available water source needs to be regulated till the arrival of next South West Monsoon in May-June 2020.
    Earlier, 30% curtailment over regular supply was imposed since 1st March 2020. However, given the current situation, unless further curtailment is imposed, it may not be possible to sustain the supply till the arrival of next monsoon.    
    Therefore, in order to sustain the water supply, it has become inevitable to impose further curtailment in the quantity of water to the extent of 50%. Consequently, the water supply to all areas falling under the jurisdiction of PHED, APWD and in the jurisdiction of PBMC shall be now made once in 04 days with effect from 8th April 2020 instead of the present schedule of once in 03 days.
    People have been requested to cooperate with APWD in this hour of crisis, to tide over the situation till the arrival of monsoon in this year.

Zero tolerance against unfair trade practices by merchants

Civil Supplies Deptt. to carry out rigorous enforcement drive

Port Blair, Apr 6: 
   The Directorate of Civil Supplies & Consumer Affairs has noticed that various Fair Price Shops, General Merchants, Pharmacies and other establishments engaged in selling / distribution of essential commodities are extorting money from the general public by means of over-charging than the maximum retail price or prevailing market price which is in gross violation of various Acts and Rules framed by the Government of India to safeguard the interest of the public.
    Taking a serious view of such gross misconduct and unfair trade practices  by  certain   sections  of  the   business  community, a rigorous Enforcement Drive shall be carried out by the Enforcement Team of the Department in the open market and maintain zero tolerance against any act of over-charging, black marketing, hoarding, etc and stringent legal action without any excuse shall be taken against those offenders found indulged in such malpractices as per the various Acts and Rules framed under The Essential Commodities Act, 1955 and The Legal Metrology Act, 2009.
   The consumers of this UT have been requested to directly inform the Director (CS&CA) regarding any malpractice by any person/shop/establishment, via text message only on mobile number 9434266828. The same can also be brought to the notice of the Department of CS&CA in writing or over Toll Free No. 18003453197 or Telephone No. 03192-234062.

LG sanctions Rs.2.50 crore out of Lt. Governor’s Relief Fund for immediate transfer to PM CARES Fund

Port Blair, Apr 6: The spread of corona virus has been alarming and is posing severe health and economic ramifications for our country. Distress situations, whether natural or otherwise, demand expeditious and collective action for alleviating the suffering of those affected, strengthening of infrastructure and capacities etc.
     In view of the gravity of the situation caused by COVID-19 and based on the appeal of the Home Minister, the Lt. Governor, A&N Islands has sanctioned an amount of Rs.2.50 crore out of Lt. Governor’s Relief Fund for immediate transfer to PM CARES Fund against the one day salary contribution of the officers and employees of Andaman and Nicobar Administration, Central Govt Offices, Local Bodies, Public Sector Undertakings etc. functioning in these Islands.
     The amount so released from the Lt. Governor’s Relief Fund to PM CARES Fund shall be recouped from the one day salary contributions by the officers and employees of Andaman and Nicobar Administration, Central Govt Offices, Local Bodies, Public Sector Undertakings etc. functioning in these Islands,.

No window in Administration to disseminate status & strategy

No one knows what is going on & what is going to happen: President, ANMF 
  Port Blair, 5th Apr, 2020: A lot is going on throughout the Union territory to contain the health emergency due to Coronavirus outbreak. But no one other than the higher officials of the UT Administration is aware about the current action and further plan of action. Through Administrations official mouth piece “The Daily Telegrams”, islanders are kept informed of No. of tests done, positive cases, relief Centre’s, bus routes etc., but there is no window to inform the local private media and public representatives about current action and further plan of action for identification of COVID suspect cases and containment strategy.
   Ganeshan, President- Andaman Nicobar Media Federation (ANMF) told this daily that earlier in disaster and emergency like situations Administration was functioning in a transparent manner with due cooperation and assistance of Public representatives. But the present team is not in disclosing its action plan and strategies to public representatives. This may not only make the execution difficult for administration but will also add shortfall in accomplishment of tasks. Today, Ganeshan tried to approach/contact the Deputy Commissioner- South Andaman, Secretary-Disaster Management and relief commissioner Disaster Management with regard to functioning of relief camp, enrolment of eligible persons in the camp, availability of safety gears for PBMC workers and other issues related to lockdown and containment plan. But none of the authorities were available for talk or disclosure of action plan. It seems that Administration has no faith and confidence on public representatives in dealing with COVID-19 and such approach is not good for democratic system, he added.

Guidelines issued for management of persons in home/institutional quarantine facilities

Persons under institutional quarantine to be discharged after due testing

Port Blair, Apr 7: The Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Govt. of India has issued Guidelines with reference to management of persons in home/institutional quarantine facilities. The latest guidelines issued on 05.04.2020  provided that the persons who are under Institutional Quarantine will only be discharged from quarantine facilities after due testing from the designated laboratory. These samples for tests shall be taken on 13th or 14th day of their quarantine period. Thereafter, the respective State/UT Administration will wait for the results of tests from the designated laboratory and after taking into account the tests results, the persons who are under Institutional Quarantine will be discharged. Further, they will be released with the direction to self-monitor their health at their homes (home quarantine) for next 14 days and immediately report to the District Surveillance Officer (DSO) or call 102/232102 in case of development of symptoms suggestive of COVID-19.
     In this regard, the UT Administration of Andaman & Nicobar Islands is currently keeping 400 suspect cases under Institutional Quarantine in Govt. Guest Houses/Private Hotels. These are the persons who travelled from mainland to the Islands as well as suspect cases who are the contacts of confirmed cases. The process of testing of these suspects has been started and will be completed within 02-03 days. Therefore, persons who are under Institutional Quarantine should wait for the results of tests of COVID-19 being performed on them. As soon as the test results are communicated by RMRC-ICMR, Dollygunj, Port Blair, the Administration will consider the discharge of quarantine. This is required to ensure that the discharged person is 100% free from the infection of the virus.
     The Deputy Commissioner, South Andaman has already prepared a Containment Plan for the areas from which confirmed cases were detected and a massive drive is going on to screen all residents of these areas on a daily basis to identify the suspect contacts to prevent community transmission of virus. Moreover, to contain the virus locally, it was also decided that no person will be allowed to visit North & Middle Andaman District and Car Nicobar District from South Andaman district without having a Negative tested report for COVID-19 from the RMRC-ICMR Laboratory. The movement will be allowed only for emergency services. All residents of the Islands, have therefore, been requested to extent all help and cooperation to the Administration to effectively contain the spread of COVID-19 in the Islands.