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Indian state uses cellphone tracking to trace COVID affected attendees of religious meet

The Indian state of Maharashtra has able to trace the presence of as many as 1,885 people who were apparently present at the recent Tablighi Jamaat congregation in the national Capital, from Mumbai. The congregation in Delhi resulted in the rise of large number of COVID-19 cases across the country. The meet has become a major cause of concern for Indian authorities.

Last month, over 9,000 people took part in the religious congregation in Nizamuddin area of India’s national capital. After ceremony was over, a large number of attendees travelled to several parts of the country. As per authorities , the number of COVID 19 cases increased in the country after the meet.  A number of them have already been put under quarantine. Searches are on for other participants.

According to an official estimate, around 2,000 people from Maharashtra took part at the Tablighi Jamaat congregation. A data from the state control room, that has been set up to track the pandemic, revealed that 1,061 people from Mumbai participated in the programme, and almost equal number from the rest of the country.

The information is based on the mobile data of those participants whose movements were tracked near the event.

Speaking to media persons, state Home Minister Anil Deshmukh said that there locations were found from cell towers. He added that of the 1,885 people, 1,826 have been traced and efforts are o to trace remaining 59 persons

The minister further said that 824 people who were in the area were not linked to the congregation. He also warned that those who are untraced have switched off their phones and would be booked in case they don’t come forward.