Covid19: Housefly can carry coronavirus! Amitabh Bachchan quotes Lancet report

FE Online

Exhorting all the countrymen to use toilet everyday, Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan has warned that the novel Coronavirus can spread quickly as the virus remains active for weeks in human excreta. Referring to a Lancet research, Bachchan said that the virus can find a viral carrier in houseflies and take gigantic proportions across the country. Terming the fight against Coronavirus as a "people’s movement" much akin to the Swachh Bharat campaign led by PM Modi, Bachchan asked everyone to use toilets everyday and lock the door properly in order to stop the entry of the house flies.

Sharing an over two-minute long video on his Twitter account which was also tagged to the Prime Minister, Bachchan explained that house flies that may have come in contact with the infected faeces can sit on the food particles and further spread the virus. The video was promptly retweeted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The study conducted by the journal has found that the virus stays active for far longer in the stool samples as compared to the respiratory samples of the infected persons. It has also found that the virus may remain active in the stool samples even after the person has recovered from the virus. Like all diseases, the research further underscores the importance of sanitation apart from social distancing in the fight against Coronavirus.

The video shared by Bachchan assumes significance as various surveys and research papers have found that despite the construction of lakhs of toilets by the government, regular and consistent use of latrines is lacking amongst many people. In some cases availability of regular supply of water has also been found as the main reason discouraging people from its regular use. In order to bring a behavioural change and ensure that the mission attains its goal of sanitation, the government has not wound up the Swachh Bharat mission and regularly spreads awareness about the toilet’s regular use.