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May 15, 2020

45 more workers of tobacco company test positive for Covid-19

Peshawar

May 15, 2020

NOWSEHRA: Another 45 workers of the Pakistan Tobacco Company (PTC) tested positive for coronavirus on Thursday which took the number of the employees affected by the viral infection to 89, official said.

DC Shahhid Ali Khan said the results of the swabs of 130 workers of the company had been received. The official said it was a matter of grave concern that more workers had tested positive for the viral disease and the tally was feared to go up. He recalled that earlier 44 workers of the same company were found suffering from Covid-19.

Shahid Ali Khan said the 45 workers who tested positive today (Thursday) had been quarantined at two locations. He said 25 of them were sent to Government College of Technology, Khander, for isolation while the rest were quarantined at their homes. The college building is serving as a quarantine centre. Of the affected persons’ job status, the deputy commissioner said 50 per cent of them were regular employees while as many were working on contracts.

The official said one senior cadre official – manager - was among the employees hit by coronavirus. The deputy commissioner said a total of 900 workers were employed with the PTC at present. Of them, he explained, 330 had been tested for the viral infection so far while the remaining 570 workers would undergo tests as well. The deputy commissioner said the matter was being investigated as the infection to a large number of workers in a company which modern facilities was a source of concern. The spokesman for the company, Madeeh Pasha, when approached for comments, said the PTC was a multinational company which was working with the collaboration of the United States and England. He said all required precautionary measures were taken to protect the workers from coronavirus before the company was allowed to work by the administration as per standard operating procedures and guidelines set by the government. Giving the details, he said disinfectant walkthrough gate had been installed at the entrance to the company to protect workers from the viral disease.

The spokesman said the workers were allowed to enter the company only after undergoing a proper screening process. He said the workers had been provided facemasks, sanitizers and other relevant facilities. The machinery was being disinfected at the end of every shift, said Madeeh Pasha. The spokesman said a total of 50 workers had been barred from the company since the outbreak of the Covid-19 there. The affected workers, he elaborated, were being paid at home. Madeeh Pasha said the company management had launched a probe with the help of the administration to know how the viral infection spread inside despite taking all precautionary measures.