The Sivagangga cluster in Kedah has caused the closure of five schools in Kedah, with immediate effect.

According to Bernama, the schools were ordered close until the end of the month in an effort to contain the cluster, which recorded 11 new COVID-19 cases yesterday, including two primary school students.

The schools involved are SMK Hosba, SK Hosba, SMK Megat Dewa, SK Megat Dewa in Kubang Pasu and SK Kubang Palas in Padang Terap, and the closure period will include 14-day quarantine period, and a further two-week's observation period.

The Sivagangga cluster was first reported on July 28. It was named as such after the patient who triggered the cluster - a 57-year-old nasi kandar shop owner in Jitra, Kedah, came home after visiting the Sivagangga district in Tamil Nadu, India.

The permanent resident flouted the home quarantine order and went to his shop, only to end up infecting scores of others with COVID-19.

Authorities have so far screened 313 people who came into contact with the man, and 20 people, including 15 Malaysians, and four children, have tested positive for the virus. Two of those infected were customers of the shop, who went on to infect their family members.

Thirteen people are awaiting test results while 280 people have tested negative.

The police have urged those who had visited the said shop in Napoh between July 13 and 24 to undergo COVID-19 screening immediately.

The Sivangangga cluster has caused the Kedah state government to impose the Targeted Enhancement Movement Control Order (TEMCO) in four localities surrounding the infection area.

As of noon yesterday, Malaysia recorded 8,999 confirmed COVID-19 cases, and 125 deaths from the disease.

The global infection and death tally from the pandemic has surpassed 18.2 million, and 692,000, respectively.

Source: Bernama
Photo source: Rojakdaily