An ISRO official said that the employees might have been infected in their residential locality at Sullurpeta in Andhra’s Nellore district.

A few health workers sitting at their desks in PPE suits, image taken from aboveImage for representation/PTI
news Coronavirus Sunday, July 19, 2020 - 14:34

Two employees of a rocket port in Sriharikota have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, an official confirmed to IANS on Saturday, adding that they might have contracted the infection from their residential locality at Sullurpeta in Andhra Pradesh’s Nellore district.

"There are quite a number of persons in Sullurpeta in Andhra Pradesh who have been infected with the coronavirus. Perhaps the virus spread is due to their connection with Koyambedu Market in Chennai," an official of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) working at Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) in Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh told IANS.

He said the distance between the rocket port and Sullurpeta residential locality is about 18 km.

The official said that as a matter of precaution, the places where they worked have been sanitised, though the centre is working with skeletal staff.

According to the official, the contact tracing of the two employees is ongoing. 

The official said all the COVID-19 related guidelines are being followed.

Recently, Sullurpeta MLA from YSRCP Kiliveti Sanjeevaiah tested positive for coronavirus and was taken to a corporate hospital in Chennai. The opposition has criticised the YSRCP government for this, saying their own leaders don’t trust the healthcare systems in the state and are therefore going out of the state for treatment. 

As of Saturday, there are 1,186 active patients in Nellore district. So far, a total of 1,995 people in the district were detected with COVID-19. A total of 788 people have already recovered, while 21 people in the district have succumbed to the disease. 

Over the past few days, Andhra has seen a major rise in the number of deaths related to COVID-19. As of Saturday, 586 people have died from the disease in the state. Kurnool district has seen the highest number of deaths at 116, followed by Krishna district with 94 deaths. 

With IANS inputs