LAST UPDATED: April 10, 2021, 5:37 p.m.
New Delhi: Senior Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader and national spokesperson Atishi on Friday said that in a meeting with the Chief Ministers, the Prime Minister suggested the adoption of Arvind Kejriwal’s model of tackling the Covid-19 pandemic.
She said that the Prime Minister has asked to implement Home Isolation, Aggressive Testing and Micro Containment Zone models of the Kejriwal government to deal with coronavirus across the country. She said that the home minister rejected the Delhi government’s move of home isolation last year, now the Prime Minister is promoting home isolation across the country. Atishi said that today, when 13 lakh tests are being conducted daily in the whole country, then one lakh tests are being conducted in only Delhi. She further added that today, the Prime Minister is telling the Chief Ministers of the country to implement the Kejriwal model of fighting against COVID-19.
Atishi said, “Keeping the rising number of Corona cases in mind, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi yesterday conducted a series of interactions with Chief Ministers of different states in the country. The Chief Ministers were advised by the Prime Minister on the future course of action. It is a matter of pride for us, for the Kejriwal-led Delhi government, for the people of Delhi that the steps taken by them in response to the first wave of COVID were recommended by the Prime Minister himself to other states of the country, as an example worthy of replication.”
She said, “Whether it is work of the government of Delhi in the field of education, health, free bus pass for women etc. the Delhi model has been a source of inspiration for the people of the country and for the different state governments in many ways. It is a matter of great pride that now our response to the COVID pandemic is also being appreciated by the Prime Minister. A series of commendable policies taken by the Delhi government have made us worthy of the Prime Ministers praise?”
Atishi said, “The first was home isolation. Delhi government was the first such government in the country that aggressively implemented home isolation. It stated that asymptomatic patients and patients with mild strains of Corona need not be admitted in hospitals and/or quarantine centers and can recover from the comfort of their homes. Government health workers were sent to their homes to guide them with the process of home isolation, additionally oximeters were provided to them. The government also hired a telemedicine company that would call these patients everyday and take daily updates. The patients too could call the doctors available through this facility via a dedicated helpline number and clear all their queries. However on 19th June, Home Minister Shri Amit Shah and the central government stopped all operations under this home isolation scheme and started a mandatory minimum 5 days institutional quarantine scheme. This did not sit very well with the public who preferred the home isolation method and did not want to be forcibly admitted to quarantine. Home Minister Shri Amit Shah and the Central government also cancelled the contract of the telemedicine company that was monitoring the home isolation operations in Delhi. However, within a few days the Central government had to retract and allow home isolation scheme to function once again owing to the logistical problems created by stopping it and the public response to it.”
She said, “Today one can say, the tables have turned. Today, the central government is openly admitting how efficient and important the home isolation method is in containing and managing Corona. Home isolation is a sensible decision; if patients that are asymptomatic and have mild strains of Corona can stay at home, then the load on hospitals decreases.
Secondly, people were afraid of getting Corona tests conducted because they believed that when tested positive of covid-19, they would be packed off and sent to a quarantine center, police, ambulance, the entire machinery would enter their homes, be stationed around it. They were afraid of being micro-managed by the state. When we announced the home isolation scheme, people were more open to the idea of getting tested and declaring themselves as Corona positive because they would no longer have to relocate and could be effectively cured at home. This allowed us to then pursue testing at large scale because people became more confident of the fact that testing would not imply constant intervention by agencies.”
She said, “This is the reason that Delhi has been able to conduct the maximum number of tests in the country. In June the figure stood at 13,000-22,000 tests per day. Today when the country is conducting 13,00,000 tests per day, Delhi is conducting 1,00,000 tests per day. We are glad that yesterday the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi praised and urged all states to follow aggressive testing in this battle against corona.”