Army denies claims Indians brought to Brandix without being quarantined

The Army denied claims a group of Indians were brought to the Minuwangoda Brandix facility without being quarantined.

Army Commander, Lieutenant General Shavendra Silva told reporters today that the claims were investigated and it was found that the claims are false.

Opposition leader Sajith Premadasa told Parliament today there are reports one or more Indians had visited the Minuwangoda Brandix facility without being tested.

Samagi Jana Balawegaya Parliamentarian Manusha Nanayakkaara told Parliament that a group of Indians had reportedly arrived at the Mattala Airport and visited the Minuwangoda Brandix facility without being quarantined.

He claimed the incident had occurred before the coronavirus was detected at the facility.

Meanwhile, Brandix issued a statement saying that no parties from India or any other country have had access to the facility during this period.

“We would also like to clarify that our facility in Minuwangoda does not use any fabric from India nor has it taken in any orders from our facility in India as well,” Brandix said.

With regards to concerns on employees returning to Sri Lanka from India through chartered flights, Brandix said that it operated three chartered flights from Visakhapatnam, India for its Sri Lankan employees working in India and their families, who returned to Sri Lanka.

“We confirm that they, including their families, followed the Sri Lanka Government protocol for the prevention and control of COVID-19, which includes PCR testing and a 14-day mandatory quarantine at a government regulated quarantine facility, as well as the 14-day self-quarantine process done under the supervision of the respective PHIs. Further to this, it must also be noted that none of these Sri Lankans nor their family members visited the Minuwangoda manufacturing facility,” Brandix said.

Brandix also noted the circulation of a video on social media that alleges that the company has requested employees to come into work, following the identification of the initial COVID-19 positive employee at the facility in Minuwangoda.

“We have identified that the primary female party is the owner of a hostel, while the two members occupying her hostel and the supervisor being referred to are employed by a third-party cleaning service provider contracted by the Brandix Minuwangoda facility. We confirm that none of these individuals are employees of Brandix,” the statement said.

As an organisation, Brandix said that rally together to care for the affected employees and their families, whilst endeavouring to minimise the impact on the communities and the nation in a collective effort to emerge from the crisis. (Colombo Gazette)

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