The BSF is mandated to guard the 443-km-long India-Bangladesh border and has approximately 12,000 personnel on duty here.
The Meghalaya government has asked the BSF to ensure their personnel coming to the state from other parts of the country undergo 14-day institutional quarantine mandatorily before they could resume duty. A number of COVID-19 cases have been detected among Border Security Force personnel. Of the 215 active cases in Meghalaya, 132 were personnel posted at the BSF frontier headquarters here.
The BSF returnees should mandatorily quarantine for 14 days at institutional facilities, regardless of being tested negative or positive, said Health Commissioner and Secretary Sampath Kumar in a letter to the inspector general of the BSF frontier headquarters.
“They will be tested after 5 to 7 days and based on the test results, they will be sent to other campuses/units of BSF for further quarantine or will continue to stay in the institutional quarantine centres of the government,” he said.
Kumar also said that the BSF personnel coming to the state have to mandatorily pre-register before their entry so that their testing and quarantine can be monitored.
The official, who is at the forefront of the state’s effort to battle COVID-19, further said the BSF should provide information to the Meghalaya government about the people who have returned in the last 14 days, who have tested and their results thereof. Stricter testing protocols need to be followed by the BSF,A BSF spokesperson said the frontier headquarters here is functioning with about 10 per cent manpower and most of the officers are working remotely.
An internal medical committee of the BSF is coordinating with the health services director regarding the clinical management of the coronavirus positive personnel, another health official told PTI. The committee was formed to coordinate with the state for any requirements of protective gear, tests and all COVID- 19 related issues, he said.
So far, 45 persons have recovered from COVID-19 in the state, while two died.