Over 20 Sri Lankan artistes are under quarantine and at least five have tested positive for the COVID -19 virus,supposedly from a dance rehearsal programme which they were involved in for a leading television entertainment channel mid last month,the Daily Mirror learns.
Sources from the entertainment industry said that some of the artistes had been admitted to the Neville Fernando Hospital after testing positive for the virus, after attending the rehearsals which was to be aired over the channel during the New Year.
Sources said that one of the artistes who was involved in the rehearsals had shown symptoms mid last month after which he got himself tested and after testing positive, all other artistes who were on set had also been subject to
PCR tests, which was organised by the TV channel.
Over 200 people, including production crew, makeup artists, dancing troupes and all others who were involved in the production had also been tested and to date, sources said that 5 artistes had tested positive and over 20 were under isolation. All those who tested negative including crew members are also among those who have placed themselves under isolation.
Production for the programme has been halted.
Contact tracing is ongoing and all first and second level contacts have also been placed under isolation, the Daily Mirror learns. The artistes who have tested positive are asymptomatic.
When contacted, officials from the Health Ministry confirmed that there were some artistes who had tested positive but could not divulge details. However this has not emerged into a new cluster as the numbers, till last night were still low, officials said. (JAMILA HUSAIN)