Two IAS and 13 PCS officers as well as two other government officials were confirmed positive for coronavirus in Punjab, officials said on Friday, as the state battles surge in infections.
Punjab Rural Development and Panchayats Minister Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa underwent a COVID-19 test after an IAS officer, who has contracted the disease, was present in a meeting attended by him, the officials said.
"Two IAS officers and 13 Punjab Civil Services (PCS) officers have tested positive for coronavirus so far," an official of the Punjab Health Department said on Friday.
"The contact tracing in these cases is underway," another official said.
Besides, a Senior Superintendent of Police and a Civil Surgeon have tested positive for the virus, officials said.
An official said samples of 34 PCS officers were collected and of which 13 tested positive and 16 negative. However, the reports in five cases are still pending, he added.
An IAS officer tested positive for the virus after his wife confirmed positive for the infection, the officials said.
He on Thursday had attended a meeting where Bajwa was also present.
"I will undergo a test for coronavirus as my director has tested positive," he said on Friday. Later during the day, the samples of the minister were collected for testing, the officials said.
Several PCS officers had attended a meeting of the Punjab Civil Services Officers Association in Chandigarh on July 3 to protest against the arrest of a fellow official.
After several PCS officers and other senior officials got infected with the contagion, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Thursday had stressed the need to raise the guard to tackle the pandemic even further.
He had also asked Chief Secretary Vini Mahajan to issue standard operating procedures for the government officers' meetings or visits to other offices, making it clear that the spread of infection among the critical manpower due to the casual attitude was not acceptable.
Meanwhile, the entry of public to the Punjab Civil Secretariat one and two here was restricted on Friday in the wake of the growing number of coronavirus cases.
Punjab has been witnessing a surge in coronavirus cases. The state has so far recorded 7,140 cases and 183 deaths.