As coronavirus cases in Maharashtra crossed 33,000-mark, Uddhav Thackeray government has ordered Cooperative Housing Societies (CHS) in Mumbai to screen every resident for the possible symptoms of COVID-19. In a letter to CHS Chairman, Maharashtra Societies Welfare Association (MahaSeWA) asked the Cooperative Housing Societies to carry out screening of their members and keep a record of their body temperature and oxygen levels.
"...it's the responsibility of the CHS to maintain Register in which they need to maintain the details of the body temperatures and oxygen level of each member and their family," MahaSeWA said, adding that the register will be checked by BMC officials.
The move has come after a local NGO wrote to Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, demanding office-bearers of all the housing societies in Mumbai be given the responsibility of monitoring the health of their members in view of the coronavirus pandemic.
The letter by Harmony Foundation chairman Dr Abraham Mathai had suggested that in case of the housing societies failed to report coronavirus cases, action should be taken against them under criminal acts.
"In a city like Mumbai, with small flats being inadequate for proper quarantine, it is important to involve all local housing societies and Advanced Locality Management (ALM) in this fight against COVID-19," Mathai had said.
"Stupidity, will expose committee members to direct risk of infection"
However, the decision has also met with criticism with a section of people, including some doctors, terming it "stupidity". Amit Thadani, a practicing surgeon said that this would expose managing committee members and staff to the direct risk of coronavirus infection.
"Maharashtra govt has taken stupidity to an amazing level. Now ordering cooperative housing societies to screen every person for fever and oxygen saturation, exposing managing committee members and staff to direct risk of infection and risking transmission across all members," he wrote on Twitter.