A new coronavirus scare has emerged in Delhi after 35 workers were found on the rooftop of a pastry shop at Bengali Market, a popular family haunt in the heart of the capital. Bengali Market has been sealed off along with the 20 virus hotspots in Delhi after three persons were diagnosed with COVID-19.
An FIR has been filed against Bengali Pastry Shop for endangering lives by defying the lockdown to check the spread of COVID-19. Asserting that it was closed, the iconic shop, in its defence, said it had provided shelter to workers who had nowhere to go.
According to the police, the workers were found on the terrace of the shop in worryingly unhygienic conditions, in a tight space with no social distancing. They have been quarantined at a shelter home.
Two of the workers have reportedly shown symptoms of coronavirus.
After these workers were discovered in a house-to-house search, officials have marked the buzzing eatery hub as a containment area.
Residents have been asked to stay in. There are over 300 houses in the neighbourhood, apart from some of Delhi's most popular eateries. Officials will provide doorstep delivery of essential supplies in the area.
Bengali Pastry Shop has posted a statement alleging "defamation", confusion and miscommunication. It said the workers were from three different shops and had been provided shelter as they could not return to their villages after the lockdown.
"Our shop has been closed since March 25 (the day the lockdown was announced) and the people who were living with us were taking shelter in our establishment since then as they could not go back to their respective hometowns due to the immediate lockdown. So in our fight against the pandemic COVID-19 these people were provided shelter, food and basic essentials under hygienic conditions to survive comfortably," said the statement.
Delhi has 669 coronavirus cases, including nine deaths. Yesterday, the state government sealed off 20 virus hotspots and made it compulsory for everyone to wear masks in public.