With the number of Covid-19 cases going up despite the lockdown thats in place to fight the pandemic, the burning question here in the state capital is whether Jaipur is losing the plot due to certain policies of the Congress government?
Till Tuesday afternoon, Jaipur had registered 619 Covid-19 cases and 13 deaths -- the highest in Rajasthan where as many as 1,628 people have tested positive so far, confirmed Additional Chief Secretary (Health) Rohit Kumar Singh.
Jaipur among the serious cities
The Inter-Ministerial Central Team (IMCT) arrived in the city on Monday to evaluate the ground situation in the state capital after the Union Home Ministry identified Jaipur among the 11 cities/districts where the Covid-19 situation was serious, officials said.
On April 15, Jaipur's BJP MP Ramcharan Bohra had written to Union Home Minister Amit Shah, drawing his attention to certain policies of the Congress government.
In his letter, Bohra said that most cases in Jaipur were being reported from one particular locality in the city -- Ramganj. On April 8, Jaipur had 129 Covid-19 cases, which spiked to 476 on April 15, of which 428 were reported from Ramganj.
Had government taken a tough stand, the number of cases wouldn't have jumped so much within a week, he said.
Congress workers question on the food distribution
Meanwhile, the Congress workers have also questioned the distribution of food, ration and grocery to a huge crowd by the MLAs of their own party amid the curfew that has been clamped on the walled city of Jaipur.
What was the need for an elected MLA of the ruling party to sit on a vehicle to sanitise roads? Was a photo op necessary? Was distributing food amid curfew to crowds of people necessary? These are a few questions which were raised by a Congress worker on conditions of anonymity.
Bohra in his letter said the infection started spreading in Ramganj from a man who recently returned from Oman, but the government failed to act in the matter.
It needs to be mentioned here that people from Ramganj went to Barmer and Sikar, infecting people in these two districts.
Another accusation levelled by Bohra was that quarantine centres were being set up in densely populated areas in Jaipur, thus increasing the risk of spreading the virus.
More COVID-19 beds needed
It may be mentioned here that Rajasthan Pradesh Congress Committee Vice President Archana Sharma has written to Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, requesting him to allocate more Covid-19 beds at the Rajasthan University of Health Sciences rather than dedicating beds to Covid-19 patients at the Jaipuria Hospital situated in her constituency.
"This decision is being protested by one and all in Malviya Nagar and patients have stopped visiting this hospital despite being unwell due to an unseen threat of the virus," she said.
Meanwhile, other Congress workers in the state also said that Rajasthan government should follow Punjab government's protocol, which took all measures to ensure Covid-19 numbers do not swell in the state.
BJP accuses the state government
BJP state President Satish Poonia also accused the government of trying to hide its failures in dealing with the Covid-19 outbreak.
"The state government is intimidating our MLAs by registering complaints with political malice," he said, referring to the recent FIRs being filed against two BJP MLAs, Ashok Lahoti and Madan Dilawar, who had accused the state government of appeasement.
Ramganj has been under curfew since March 26 when a 45-year-old man who had returned from Oman tested positive. He had returned on March 12, but did not follow quarantine measures and instead infected scores of others.
The government tightened the curfew measures from April 6 after violations by the residents of Ramganj. BJP officials have also been demanding invocation of National Security Act (NSA) against people attacking doctors and police personnel. However, Chief Minister Gehlot has maintained that NSA was not the need of the hour in the present circumstances.