Just when the fight against COVID-19 shows some signs of success, loose ends reveal in unsuspecting spots. It has now been revealed that a Palakkad native who had tested positive on March 25 has travelled extensively in the district for nearly eight days after his return from Umrah in Saudi Arabia. His contact tracing could pose as much trouble as that of the Kasaragod native who had travelled widely and was said to have been in contact with hundreds of people.
The Palakkad man, who lives in Karakkurrissi village in Central Palakkad, poses yet another problem. All the while he was at home, flouting quarantine protocols, his son, a KSRTC conductor, who lives in the same house as the father had been doing duty on long-distance routes that branched from Palakkad to Coimbatore in the east and Thiruvananthapuram in the south.
The son's serum sample has also been sent for testing. “It will come either today or tomorrow. If it turns positive we will have to actively trace the contacts,” Palakkad collector D Balamurali said.
Palakkad collector said the preliminary route map of the Palakkad man's travels would be put out soon. The man had returned from Umrah on March 13. He came under observation only eight days later, on March 21. Even though he was asked to isolate himself in his house, and even after he developed minor symptoms, the man kept visiting places and meeting people, mostly banks and shops in the area.
On March 17, the son had duty on a bus travelling from Mannarkad via Attapadi to Coimbatore. On the next day, he did duty on the Palakkad-Thiruvananthapuram route. The timings of the buses will be put out soon. People who had travelled to Coimbatore and Thiruvananthapuram on these buses on these dates will have to inform authorities and strictly quarantine themselves.