KOLKATA: The legendary Eden Gardens cricket stadium in Kolkata will be used as a quarantine centre for Indian police who have the coronavirus.
With the city’s hospitals under growing pressure, hundreds of beds are to be set up in the 80,000 capacity stadium that hosted the 1987 World Cup final.
Kolkata Police requested the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) to make use of the area under its galleries to set up a makeshift quarantine facility for police personnel on an urgent basis.
Nearly 550 police officers in Kolkata have tested positive for the coronavirus and two have died.
“It is our duty to help and support the administration in this hour of crisis. The quarantine facility will be used for police personnel who are COVID-19 warriors,” said Cricket Association of Bengal president Avishek Dalmiya.
The beds will be put in galleries around the seating and not on the pitch and would be thoroughly segregated as a safety measure. The stadium was last used by India for a day-night Test against Bangladesh last November.
The stadium is also used by the Indian Premier League (IPL) side Kolkata Knight Riders but this year’s tournament has been repeatedly postponed because of the pandemic. India’s nationwide coronavirus toll rose Saturday to 820,916 cases with 22,193 deaths.