15 Mar 2020
Agra DM wants FIR against coronavirus-infected Bengaluru techie's wife
The 25-year-old Bengaluru woman, who allegedly tried to dodge coronavirus testing, now faces an FIR in Agra.
The Agra District Magistrate has reportedly ordered the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) to file an FIR against the woman, whose husband has been tested positive for the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
However, the woman's family refutes allegations that she had fled testing and isolation.
Early reports said woman 'fled from Bengaluru'
On Friday, reports emerged that the woman had fled Bengaluru and that she was found positive for COVID-19.
On March 6, she and her husband had returned to India from their honeymoon in Europe, the new epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic.
On March 9, the woman took a flight to Delhi and then a train to Agra to meet her parents.
Date when husband tested positive was misreported; caused confusion
Citing Agra officials, The Times of India reported Friday that the woman's husband had been tested positive for coronavirus on March 7.
This led to accusations that the woman fled from Bengaluru to Agra to avoid testing and isolation.
However, the report has been updated with inputs from Google, the firm where her husband works, saying he was tested positive on March 12.
Google also clarified that couple didn't visit Italy
A Google spokesperson told TOI that the husband had returned to office on March 9 and felt unwell. The next day, he was admitted to a hospital for a check-up.
On the evening of March 12, he was tested positive for COVID-19.
Further, the Google spokesperson added that the couple only traveled to Greece, Switzerland, and France; not Italy, as previously reported.
Techie says he has tickets to support claims
Speaking to The Indian Express, the husband echoed Google's statement, adding, "It's untrue that [my wife] purposely traveled outside the city despite knowing about my condition." The husband also said he had the tickets to prove his assertions.
Karnataka government also backed these version of events
Speaking at a presser on Saturday, Karnataka Minister of Medical Education, Dr. Sudhakar, said that the couple reached Mumbai from Europe on March 6, The News Minute reported.
They then reached Bengaluru on March 8 at around 9:45 pm and the woman boarded a Bengaluru-Delhi flight at 1:30 am on March 9—never leaving the airport.
Dr. Sudhakar maintained the woman did not "flee."
Agra officials’ claim
So, why are Agra authorities filing an FIR?
Meanwhile, Agra District Magistrate Prabhu Narain Singh said they learnt about the Google employee testing positive and his wife's presence in Agra on March 12.
The woman was taken to a hospital where a heavy viral load was detected.
Agra CMO Mukesh Vats told TIE that the woman was asked to remain in an isolation ward, however, she left.
Woman's family allegedly lied about her whereabouts
On March 13, when authorities visited the family's Agra home, the family allegedly lied about the woman having left for Bengaluru via Delhi, DM Singh said.
When her phone was put on surveillance, she was found hiding inside her Agra residence, the DM added.
The woman was then retrieved by the police. Her samples were sent for second round of testing on Sunday.
FIR will be lodged under IPC Sections 269, 270: Singh
Singh told TOI, "An FIR will be lodged against them under IPC Sections 269 (negligent act likely to spread infection of disease dangerous to life) and 270 (malignant act likely to spread infection of disease dangerous to life)."
He added, "Besides, a letter has been sent to the divisional railway manager (DRM) recommending departmental action against the woman's father, a railway engineer."