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The special action group on Covid-19 in Nagaland on Thursday asked the faith-based organisations to play a role in disseminating information to create awareness on personal hygiene to prevent and combat the virus.

The group also urged the faith-based organisations to create awareness on practicing respiratory etiquettes like coughing, sneezing, use of the handkerchief, social distancing among the public to combat the pandemic.

The group made the appeal at an emergency meeting with various faith-based organisations at the new secretariat conference hall in Kohima.

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It also asked people to contact the Covid-19 helpline for further assistance and screening.

The Nagaland government on Tuesday constituted a nine-member special action group under the chairmanship of Nagaland principal secretary and home commissioner Abhijit Sinha to continuously monitor any situation arising out of novel coronavirus.

Sinha briefed the meeting on the outbreak of coronavirus and how it is affecting the world.

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He also explained how the infection has spread across different nations through carriers.

Sinha said Covid-19 is a new virus and there are no vaccines developed to kill it so far.

The only weapon to fight the virus is containment and personal hygiene, he added.

Sinha apprised the gathering that there are no positive cases detected in Nagaland and other northeastern states so far.

He said the state government is taking all precautionary measures to control the pandemic.

Sinha also said screening of passengers at Dimapur railway station and various entry points besides Dimapur airport have already been started.

He explained that the virus is highly infectious and can easily spread at community gatherings and other crowded places.

Stressing that the transmission chain needs to be broken, he advised all organisations to minimise or avoid any sort of mass gatherings until the virus is contained.

The principal director, health and family welfare department, Dr Vizolie Suokhrie, said the virus spreads rapidly mainly because of poor hygiene. He called upon the organizations to inform their members to be aware and maintain good hygienic practices.

He said anyone with cough, cold or fever needs to self-isolate at home and should get screened at the earliest.

Suokhrie the state government machinery is working towards preventing the spread of the virus in the state. He urged the faith-based organisations to support and cooperate in fighting the pandemic.

The president of Kohima Town Baptist Pastors Fellowship, Rev. Kevichalie appreciated the state government for taking positive steps towards containing the spread of the virus in the state.

He said the usually held Sunrise Service at Kohima World War II Memorial during Easter Sunday has been cancelled due to the outbreak of Covid-19.

Bhadra Gogoi is Northeast Now Correspondent in Nagaland. He can be reached at: