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Villagers attack medical team in Kerala's Thiruvananthapuram

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Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala) | July 13, 2020 1:41:52 AM IST
A medical team that visited the coastal village of Poonthura of Thiruvananthapuram for COVID-19 swab collection on Friday were surrounded by villagers who hit on their car and manhandled the team.

The team was led by Dr Dyuthi Hariprasad, who got her medical registration just 10 days ago. The doctor who is working in Valiyathura coastal speciality hospital as part of three months of compulsory rural service for doctors recounted the "fearful experience" she and her team were subject too at the Poonthura coastal village on Friday.

"Villagers were shouting, hitting on our car. They asked the driver to lower the windows. We tried to convince people that we were a health team which had come for a swab collection. They removed their mask and forced their heads into the car and coughed at us," she said.

"We were six people in the car, a staff nurse, a nursing assistant, lab technician, a driver, a staff nurse and I. The gate of Ayush hospital seemed closed when we arrived there. Suddenly a group of about 60 to 70 members both men and women surrounded our vehicle and began shouting at us and, hitting at our car. Some people hurled abuses at us," the doctor said.

Later, she said that some people in the crowd said since most of us were women and some of us were crying, they decided to let us go and released us," she added.

Dr Dyuthi further said that the health workers and doctors were working very hard to save lives but "Instead of supporting us, we see that doctors' cars are being attacked. It is scary to hear that. People should support health workers," she said.

Poonthura is a densely populated coastal village in the Thiruvananthapuram city limit. It was declared as the state's first COVID-19 super spread and recently triple lockdown was imposed across the Thiruvananthapuram corporation area. Commandos and large numbers of police officials were deployed in the Poonthura area to block people's movement. In Poonthura area out of 1192 tests conducted, 243 were tested positive.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had alleged in his media briefing that some opposition leaders had provoked people in Poonthura.

Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja said that triple lockdown has been imposed in the Thiruvananthapuram corporation area because there was no other option. (ANI)

 
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