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New app to enable people to stay away from COVID-19 patients

With the Ahmedabad civic body making public details of coronavirus patients “in larger interest” of citizens, an IT professional has developed an app using the Google Maps feature to provide the exact location of the patients so that people can stay away from such areas.

With over 130 coronavirus cases reported from Ahmedabad so far, people here are using the new app to assess locations of such patients.

The app started operating from Tuesday and garnered nearly six lakh views within a day.

“The aim is to help citizens know the exact location of residential societies where coronavirus cases have been found, so that they do not venture there and stay safe,” Ahmedabad-based IT professional Abhay Jani told PTI.

On the map, one can clearly view the locations of such patientsin areas like Kalupur, Memnagar, Ramdev Nagar, Ambawadi, Bapunagar, Bodakdev, Astodia, Jamalpur, he said.

“I have used the data of such patients being provided to citizens by the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation. Using the Google My Maps feature, I have created a customised map of coronavirus cases in the city, and shared the link on social media platforms for public access,” said Jani, who is associated with a tech start-up.

Jani said he has decided to update it on a daily basis using details provided by the city civic body.

The application also provides helpline numbers to contact government authorities if people come in contact with the identified coronavirus patients.

On the move to make public details of COVID-19 patients, Ahmedabad Municipal Commissioner Vijay Nehra said this was being done “in larger public interest” and with a view to stop the spread of the disease.

This is being done so that “other people who could have potentially come in contact with them can voluntarily inform the authorities and isolate themselves, and thereby avoid becoming unsuspecting carriers of the virus,” the civic body said in a recent order.

In order protect the coronavirus patients from social discrimination after their names are made public, the civic body has also decided to invoke IPC Section 188 (punishment for disobeying any order duly promulgated by a public servant), and provisions of the Epidemic Diseases Act.

―Outlook India

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