COVID-19: Mumbai's NSCI dome turns into quarantine facility

NSCI becomes the first sporting facility in Mumbai to be used as a quarantine facility and is expected to begin operation from Thursday.

National Sports Club of India's dome being set up as a quarantine facility.   -  Special Arrangement

At a time when Maharashtra grapples with the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has decided to convert the National Sports Club of India's dome into a quarantine facility.

The preparations have already begun to turn the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Indoor Stadium -- which has hosted innumerable sporting events, including the Pro Kabaddi League and the NBA India games -- into quarantine zone, which can accommodate around 400-500 patients.

“The authorities were looking for places where they could keep people for quarantine in the respective areas and they have identified this place. And we extended our support by giving them the dome,” the NSCI’s honorary reg. secretary, Atul Maru, told Sportstar on Wednesday.

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“All the suspected patients from the G Ward South area of Mumbai will be identified and about 400-500 people can be kept here for quarantine. We will extend all our support,” Maru said.

The BMC has already started setting up the facility and it is expected to begin operation from Thursday. In a tweet, Maharashtra Chief Minister, Uddhav Thackeray stated: “The entire state machinery will leave no stone unturned to win this #WarAgainstVirus.”

Mazhar Nadiadwala, Managing Director, Dome Entertainment, said: “Considering the trying times during the COVID-19 pandemic, one of India's largest event venues, Dome, NSCI Worli, with support from National Sports Club of India, has extended help to the citizens. Having joined hands with the Maharashtra Govt, we at DOME, have converted the venue into a special observation zone for individuals, who are believed to have come in contact with COVID-19 patients."

"In a bid to fight the virus, we have already set up over 300 beds with standardized facilities in line with the BMC guidelines and NSCI has also offered rooms for the same. We are consistently working along with health authorities to render our support and help manage the existing cases of the outbreak.  We laud the steps taken by Shri Uddhavji Thackeray and Aaditya Thackeray, and aim to go the extra mile and support the people of out our city, state and country," Nadiadwala said.

On behalf of the NSCI, Maru has also apprised the members about the development. In a notice, he stated: “Dear Members, I want to apprise you that the NSCI Management has received a directive from the Municipal Corporation Of Greater Mumbai stating that they want to acquire our club premises with immediate effect as a centre for containment of COVID-19."

NSCI dome being fumigated by a BMC worker.   -  Special Arrangement


Maru further added that club was ‘completely cooperating’ and was ready to help the civic officials in any way they required.

"I sincerely hope you all are taking adequate precautions and staying indoors," he added.

In Mumbai, NSCI becomes the first sporting facility to be used as a quarantine zone. Till Wednesday, Maharashtra has recorded the highest number of cases in the country with 1141 positive cases.

Earlier, the Mumbai Cricket Association had also stated that it would make the Wankhede Stadium available for quarantine if required.