Colombo: The health authorities in Sri Lanka have increased testing for the coronavirus in the densely populated slums here after over 1,000 people were quarantined following one positive case in one of the shanties. Also Read - Amid COVID-19 Crisis, Sri Lanka Announces Fresh Date For Parliamentary Elections
With 12 new cases reported on Wednesday, the total number of COVID-19 infections reached 323 in the country. Seven people have died so far of the disease, while 105 have recovered. Also Read - South Africa's Tour of Sri Lanka Postponed in Wake of COVID-19 Pandemic
We have increased conducting PCR tests on people from those areas, Anil Jasinghe, Director of General Health Services said. Also Read - Coronavirus Crisis: Sri Lanka to Relax Nationwide Curfew From Monday
The move comes after over 1,000 people were sent for quarantine following the discovery of one positive case at Bandaranaike Road area in central Colombo.
Jasinghe said that over 500 vendors at the wholesale fish market were also subject to PCR tests due to the threat of community transmission. A fish retailer who is a COVID-19 positive had visited the market recently, Jasinghe said.
Police have issued new guidelines for mobile traders who visit residential areas for services during the lockdown. They have to be adequately protected, police said.
Hair saloons have been ordered to remain closed, while only two passengers would be permitted in auto rickshaws, police said.
The country has placed some key districts under a total lockdown until April 27, while some of the districts relaxed curfew from this week. On Monday, the government dropped its decision to relax the nationwide curfew.
The island nation has been under a 24-hour curfew since March 20 to combat the deadly viral infection.