STATE TIMES NEWS Ladakh: Ladakh MP Jamyang Tsering Namgyal has sanctioned Rs one crore from his MPLADS fund for both Leh and Kargil districts, besides donating his one month salary of Rs one lakh to the PM Relief Fund in order to strengthen the ongoing fight against coronavirus. The Centre has recently changed guidelines to allow the use of Member of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS) fund to supplement the government’s effort in battle against the deadly disease. “Pandemic COVID 19 is creating a challenging situation world over. Considering the pandemic situation has already reached Ladakh with 13 positive cases (3 of them have resulted negative after treatment), I decided to sanction the amount and donate the salary,” Namgyal told PTI on Monday. He said Ladakh being a landlocked region during the long winter season and with the current situation of suspension of airlines, is facing acute shortage of essential medicines and other medical supplies. “To keep all my people safe at this hour of need, I am trying my best to coordinate with all officials concerned at all levels and assisting the administration of Union Territory of Ladakh with my all possible time, energy and efforts,” the Lok Sabha member said. He said authorities are working on establishing a bio safety level-2 (BSL) (or BSL-3 Lab, if possible) laboratory in Ladakh so that tests for COVID-19 can be conducted here. “As of now, we are sending each of COVID-19 samples to Delhi for laboratory testing on daily basis,” Namgyal said. The funds sanctioned by the MP will be utilised by the deputy commissioners of both the districts of Ladakh for purchasing equipment for establishment of bio safety level-3 testing laboratory and infra-red thermometers (non-contact), among others. Besides these, the amount can be used for purchasing personal protection equipment (PPE) for the medical personnel, thermal imaging scanners, coronavirus testing kits for airports of Leh, Kargil and Thoise, and Manali-Leh and Srinagar-Leh roads which allow detecting of temperature from a safe distance. The fund will be further used to improve the ventilators and isolation/quarantine wards. Recently, the Ladakh MP played a pivotal role in the evacuation of 577 stranded Muslim passengers from Iran. He also ensured that Ladakh students who are stranded at various locations such as Dehradun, Jammu, Nagpur, Srinagar, Gujarat, Bengaluru and Chandigarh, etc. amid the 21-day lockdown get essential commodities.
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