In the fight against the second wave of Covid-19, which is sweeping rural areas, a village in Odisha’s Ganjam district has emerged as a “model” for the rest of the state.
Karanjara village in Danapur panchayat of Khalikote block, which has 261 households and a population of approximately 1,234 people, has not reported a single case of Covid-19 since the pandemic began last year.
The villagers have not yet complained of any Covid 19 symptoms. In January, the administration conducted a Covid test on as many as 32 villagers random, and all of them tested negative.
Meanwhile, in accordance with state government policy, healthcare workers such as Asha and anganwadi workers conduct door-to-door surveys in the village on a regular basis to assess the health of the elderly, those with mild symptoms, and those at high risk.
Ganjam Collector Vijay Kulange, who recently visited the village and spoke with some of the residents, said that the villagers are very much aware of the Covid-19 safety protocols. Every single villager, including women and children, wear masks and strictly follows social distancing whenever they leave their house.
“It is their perseverance that keeps them at home, and not a single villager steps out of their home until something extremely important happens,” Ganjam Collector Kulange added.
“Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have been raising massive awareness among villagers to wear masks and follow social distancing norms as instructed by the administration,” said Trinath Behera, President of the Karanjara Village community.
“Despite the fact that some of our village’s youth work in Mumbai, they did not return last year. Those who returned were self-quarantined for 14 days in government healthcare centres before being allowed to return to the village, Trinath Behara added.
Since the Covid-19 outbreak in 2020, the villagers have not held any feasts or receptions. However, the village youth regularly conduct cleanliness drives.