Haryana agriculture minister tests positive for COVID-19

The minister said that he has isolated himself at home and appealed to all those who had come in his contact to get themselves examined.

Chandigarh: Haryana Agriculture Minister J P Dalal has tested positive for COVID-19, he said in a tweet on Wednesday, making him the eighth legislator of the ruling BJP in the state to contract the infection.

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Dalal said he got himself tested three days ago and the report returned negative. However, he got one more test conducted later, in which he tested positive.

The minister said that he has isolated himself at home and appealed to all those who had come in his contact to get themselves examined.

BJP MP from Karnal Sanjay Bhatia and party MLA from Gharaunda in Karnal district, Harvinder Kalyan, in their tweets said they have tested positive for coronavirus. Kalyan too had got himself tested three days ago and the report was negative. But after developing symptoms, he got himself tested again and the report returned positive on Sunday evening.

Besides Bhatia, the BJP MPs from the state who were infected with COVID-19 earlier were Brijendra Singh and Nayab Singh Saini, representing Hisar and Kurukshetra, respectively.

Mool Chand Sharma

Haryana Transport Minister Mool Chand Sharma tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday, a day before the Assembly’s monsoon session began in Chandigarh.

On Monday, Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar and Speaker Gian Chand Gupta were also found to be infected with the virus.

Khattar is admitted to Gurgaon’s Medanta hospital, and is in a stable condition. BJP MLAs Lakshman Napa, Ram Kumar Kashyap and Aseem Goel have also tested positive as have six Assembly staffers, officials said.

Earlier, the speaker had made it mandatory for anyone entering the Assembly complex for the monsoon session to show a COVID-19 negative certificate, which should not be older than three days. This was done on Health Minister Anil Vij’s suggestion.

The seating arrangement in the House has also been changed to ensure social distancing, officials said.

Haryana Assembly has a strength of 90 members. One seat is currently vacant after the demise of opposition Congress MLA Shri Krishan Hooda in April.

The state currently has close to 57,000 COVID-19 cases and over 600 fatalities.

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