Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant: Rising infections among workers
More and more workers of different sub-contracting firms at Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant in Ishwardi upazila are getting infected with the novel coronavirus.
Upazila Health Officer Dr AFM Asma Khatun said 103 people in the upazila have been diagnosed with the virus till July 6. Of them, around 90 workers were infected with Covid-19 in the last three days. The majority of the workers who tested positive for coronavirus work at Paharpur Cooling Tower Ltd, a sub-contracting firm of the Rooppur project.
The number of Covid-19 patients has increased as over 800 employees of the sub-contracting firms at the plant gave samples to the labs of different government and private institutions for Covid-19 testing in the last few days, said the doctor, adding that the number of infected workers is increasing every day.
Most of the Covid-19 patients are the workers of Paharpur Cooling Tower Ltd, a sub-contracting firm of the plant, said Dr Asma Khatun, adding that the authorities of different sub-contracting firms at Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant have collected samples of several hundred workers and sent those to the lab of a private institution in Dhaka for coronavirus testing but they are yet to get copy of the test reports from the private institution.
ABM Ruhul Kuddus, site officer of Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant, said Paharpur Cooling Tower Ltd is working for construction of basement of the cooling tower under the project. A few workers of the sub-contracting firm tested positive for coronavirus last month and it was then put on lockdown.
There are 22 to 23 sub-contracting firms at the plant, he said.
The novel coronavirus began spreading among people in the area but it is not hampering the entire work of Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant, claimed Dr Shawkat Akbar, project director of the plant.
Construction work of Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant runs under medical monitoring, he said.
Asked about the infected employees, Shawkat said they all were the job seekers who came to work at the sub-contracting firm, not regular workers of the project.
There are around 8,000 local and foreign workers at Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant, he added.
Civil Surgeon Dr Mehedi Iqbal said as of Monday, 584 people in Pabna have been diagnosed with Covid-19. Of them, 110 were infected with the virus in the entire district on July 6.
Eight people have died from Covid-19 while 155 patients recovered from the disease here till the date, said the civil surgeon.
Meanwhile, 12 people have died from coronavirus-like symptoms till now, said sources at different hospitals in the district.