The coronavirus scare has gripped those working at the Andhra Pradesh State Secretariat at Velagapudi, Amaravati as two employees tested positive for the virus on Monday. As per reports, the two employees were working at the Agriculture Department of the secretariat. They returned home to Andhra Pradesh last week via special APSRTC buses arranged to bring back locals stranded outside the state due to the lockdown. While the affected are currently receiving treatment , the authorities have restricted access to Block 4 of the Secretariat, where the Agriculture Department is located to sanitise the building and its surroundings. Employees working in the Agriculture Department have been asked to work from home for the next two days. Further, access has also been restricted to Block 3 where the Secretariat Canteen is located, since the common area would attract a lot of crowd.
Officials have asked all the employees who came into contact with the affected to quarantine themselves at home. Reports state that police and revenue officers have identified the primary contacts of those affected and placed them in quarantine as a precautionary measure. Meanwhile, Minister of Industries, Commerce, and Information Technology Mekapati Goutham Reddy shifted his office from the Secretariat to the Andhra Pradesh Technology Services (APTS) Bhavan at Vijayawada to continue his work.
Authorities stated that the sanitisation works to disinfect the Secretariat in Andhra Pradesh began two days ago will continue for the next one week, in wake of the employees testing positive for coronavirus. Employees working in various departments of Block 3 and Block 4 of the Secretariat have been asked to stay at home for at least two more days, until the location is safe enough to return to. Blocks 1,2 and 5 of the Secretariat were functional on Monday, albeit with a skeletal staff owing to the news. All employees have been instructed to approach their local hospital if found with any COVID-19 symptoms.
The total number of COVID-19 cases in Andhra Pradesh rose to 3118 on Monday morning.