COVID-19: Open borders pose threat for Dimapur

Western Sumi Youth Front officials with some leaders of Naga villages at Assam-Nagaland border in Aghunaqa area, Dimapur on May 19. (Morung Photo)
Western Sumi Youth Front officials with some leaders of Naga villages at Assam-Nagaland border in Aghunaqa area, Dimapur on May 19. (Morung Photo)

WSYF appeals for check gates, health personnel

Morung Express News
Dimapur | May 21

Even as the state government has undertaken steps to seal the borders, the unmanned open borders in Khaghaboto, Aghunaqa, Kuhuboto and Niuland areas of Dimapur pose huge threat towards containing the spread of COVID-19 in the state particularly Dimapur.

Although communities have volunteered to do round the clock vigil in some entry and exit points, the absence of state police check gates and health officials has been a major concern for people of the area.

While IRB personnel does patrolling in the Naga villages bordering Assam, the exercise contributing to stoppage of entry of people from the other side is minuscule.

On May 19, officials of the Western Sumi Youth Front (WSYF) visited borders of the four areas and interacted with leaders of the villages and areas. During the visit, people living at the border expressed fear about the possibility of people infected with the disease entering their villages and areas from Assam side since there were no check gates.

WSYF President, Mughavi Awomi informed that around 28 Naga villages in Khaghaboto and Aghunaqa areas alone share boundary with Assam. He urged the people living at the borders to take utmost personal preventive measures since the absence of check gates leaves them vulnerable to the disease. Appealing the state government to set up check gates in the border areas at feasible locations for the safety of the citizens, the WSYF President also urged the district police to provide better and good conditioned vehicles for IRB personnel patrolling the areas since the roads are in deplorable condition. He also appealed the Health and Family Welfare Department to depute health officials in the border areas.

During the tour, the WSYF officials interacted with police personnel on duty at Kuhuboto town gate and requested them to strictly monitor entry of people, livestock and other commodities from Assam side.

WSYF Vice President, Mughavi Kiho requested the village authorities not to deny entry of returnees into their villages after completing government institutional quarantine. He also encouraged the villages to set up their own quarantine centres as being done by others in the state as a preventive measure.

The spread of African Swine Fever was another major concern shared by the WSYF team during their interaction with the communities and urged them to remain vigilant against entry of livestock especially pigs from Assam. The WSYF also extended their full support and cooperation towards ban on alcohol and tobacco products.