As many as 19 members of a family in Telangana's Zaheerabad town have tested positive for COVID-19, officials said on Saturday. According to the health department officials, all of them are relatives of a 55-year-old woman, who had died at a private hospital in Hyderabad on June 9.
Her body was brought to Zaheerabad and was buried the same day. The next day, the hospital authorities informed her family members that the samples collected before her death have tested positive for the coronavirus.
The health department and municipal officials went on alert and shifted the deceased's family members and relatives to an isolation centre. They collected samples of 25 people and of them, 19 returned positive. They include women and children. The results were known late on Friday.
The officials shifted all those who tested positive to the district hospital in Sangareddy. The area where the woman's house is located has been declared a containment zone. District officials said that efforts were being made to trace all those who had attended the woman's last rites.
Meanwhile, Greater Hyderabad Mayor Bonthu Rammohan on Saturday tested negative for the coronavirus. He had undergone the test on Friday after his driver had tested positive. The driver was found positive after tests were conducted on employees working in the mayor's chambers in the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) office after an employee had tested positive.
Since the driver had accompanied him during his visit to various parts of the city, Rammohan went into quarantine and also underwent the test.
This was the second time in less than a week that the mayor has undergone the COVID-19 test. Earlier, he had given his samples for the test on June 7 and the result returned negative.
Rammohan had voluntarily come forward to undergo the test after a worker at a hotel, where he had tea on June 1, had tested positive.
After participating in a sanitation programme, the mayor had tea at a hotel in Adikmet. It was later found that a worker at the hotel had tested positive.
The mayor said the worker had left the hotel nine days before he had tea there and though the chances of catching COVID-19 were ruled out, he was still going for a test as a precautionary measure.
Meanwhile, in a steep single-day jump, Telangana reported 253 fresh cases of coronavirus on Saturday. The surge has pushed the state's tally to 4,737. More than 600 cases were reported in the last three days. It was only on June 10 that the state had crossed the 4,000 mark.