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New Delhi: Six employees of The Times Network have reportedly tested positive for the novel coronavirus in Mumbai. These include four workers of the group’s English news channel Mirror Now.

In a statement to media website Sunday, the leading broadcaster said, “Despite practising all safety measures and precautions while fulfilling their duties, four of our colleagues at Mirror Now and two support staff members have tested coronavirus positive. Following BMC (Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation) guidance, they have been shifted to the mandatory quarantine facility at a private hospital in Mumbai and are doing fine.”

The rest of the network’s staff has tested negative and “continue to be lodged with us safely”, said the statement.

“As per standard protocol, BMC has conducted anti-virus sanitisation at our Lower Parel premises, and it will be ready for resuming operations by mid next week,” it added.

The four positive Covid-19 positive cases reported from Mirror Now are ancillary staff, meaning, they work on the desk, while the other two are pantry staff from ET Now, sources told ThePrint.

Also read: Vaccine against coronavirus could be ready by September

Alternative facility

Following the development, the Times Network has moved the operation of both Mirror Now and ET Now to an alternative facility.

“To ensure non-stop news to our viewers, the operations of Mirror Now and ET Now have been shifted to an alternative location in Mumbai, which was kept ready for an emergency scenario. This is being managed by a fresh standby team,” the statement to BestmediaInfo said.

It also said the staff required to manage operations that can’t be run from home is being kept at the company premises at different locations to minimise their contact with the external environment. The staff members who tested positive were staying on company premises.

“To minimise external contact, our News HQ and tech teams were accommodated in captive locations within our premises and other boarding locations in Mumbai and Delhi, with dedicated sanitised transportation to ensure they did not have to travel from home daily and risk their families and colleagues,” the statement said.

“In spite of this mishap, we will continue with the strategy of housing our teams in captive locations as we believe this is the safest option to ensure they don’t get infected from multiple external environments and pass on the risk of infection to their families and into the community,” it added.

The development came hours after news daily Mumbai Mirror, also under The Times Group, reported that three journalists from a media house have tested positive for Covid-19 and 37 of their colleagues have been put under quarantine.

Also read: Why a total lockdown of India after 14 April will be counter-productive


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