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9 out of 11 COVID-infected members of Great Andamanese tribe have recovered: Govt

The Andaman and Nicobar Islands recorded 28 new cases and two deaths from September 9 to September 15, according to government data. There are six notified Scheduled Tribes in the archipelago -- Nicobarese, Great Andamanese, Jarawa, Sentinelese, Onge and Shompen.

PTI | New Delhi | Updated: 17-09-2020 13:05 IST | Created: 17-09-2020 13:05 IST
9 out of 11 COVID-infected members of Great Andamanese tribe have recovered: Govt

Nine out of the 11 coronavirus-infected members of the primitive Great Andamanese tribe in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands have recovered, the government told Rajya Sabha on Thursday. Union Tribal Affairs Minister Arjun Munda also said that the particularly vulnerable tribal groups of Onges, Jarawas and Shompens are safe from the virus. "The 11 infected members of the Great Andamanese tribe are among those who were either themselves engaged or had families working in government establishments. Except two, all of them have fully recovered and moved back to their settlement in Strait Island," the minister told the Upper House. There are only around 50 surviving members of the Great Andamanese tribe.

Munda said the archipelago administration was giving special focus and attention to the protection and wellbeing of PVTGs. "The samples of the entire Onges population in Little Andaman Island have tested negative. Testing of Jarawas in three different areas has also confirmed their COVID free status. The Shompens are also safe in the Great Nicobar Island," he said.

The health of these tribals has been vigorously monitored and proactive measures to prioritize their testing have helped in early detection of cases, the minister said. Several steps have been taken to strengthen capacities for treatment such as delivery of medication and pulse oximeters free of cost at the doorstep, admission of any symptomatic person and those with co-morbidities to COVID care facilities, he said. The Andaman and Nicobar Islands recorded 28 new cases and two deaths from September 9 to September 15, according to government data.

There are six notified Scheduled Tribes in the archipelago -- Nicobarese, Great Andamanese, Jarawa, Sentinelese, Onge and Shompen. Barring Nicobarese, all are recognized as PVTGs, characterized by declining or stagnant population, low level of literacy, pre-agricultural level of technology and economic backwardness.


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