COVID-positive driver’s wife, daughter and primary contacts test negative

Gangtok, 07 Jul:

All the 15 primary contacts of the taxi driver who recently tested positive in Rangpo and his wife and three-year-old daughter have all tested negative for COVID-19.

The primary contacts were lodged in the same transit camp as the driver in question and two of them had also ferried passengers to same quarantine centre as the one from which the taxi driver is believed to have contracted the virus.

This news comes as yet another reiteration of the mischief of fake news. Soon after word had arrived that the driver had tested positive, WhatsApp forwards were insistent that even his wife and daughter had tested positive and raised fears that they must have in turn transmitted the virus as well.

The authorities had been insistent that the driver was living in a transit camp and not with his family, but some sections had continued to insist otherwise. With the wife and daughter testing negative, those rumours have been dispelled. But that will hold only until another conspiracy catches the fancy of those who circulate hearsay and fan fears. With the fact-checking committee proving to be an expectedly token effort, Sikkim is destined to remain a state where fake news circulates unchecked.