Bengaluru: The Karnataka police have arrested four persons in connection with providing a fake RT-PCR certificate to a 66-year-old South African national who tested positive for Covid-19, sources in the Health Department said on Monday December 13.
The South African, who was undergoing quarantine in a five star hotel after testing positive for Covid-19, had managed to escape to his country by producing a fake RT-PCR negative report before the authorities.
According to police, two employees who worked in a software company in Bengaluru owned by the South African, and two staff members of a private lab, have been arrested for making the fake RT-PCR report.
However, the South African fled to his country via Dubai through the fake report.
The High Ground police who took up the investigation on the basis of the RT-PCR report submitted at the KempeGowda International Airport (KIAL) by the South African national had questioned the private lab staff.
After they were taken into custody, they revealed the names of two others.
The South African had come to Bengaluru on November 20. He tested positive for Covid-19 at the KIAL airport. Later, his samples were sent for genome sequencing. He was asked to remain in quarantine until the results came. But, he wanted to return to his country.
He had approached two of his employees and in turn they had approached a private lab near Electronics City. They bribed the lab technicians and swapped the swab samples of the South African with those of a healthy person. They had prepared a fake negative RT-PCR report by November 26.
The very next day he submitted the fake negative RT-PCR report to the hotel and airport authorities and flew to South Africa. His genome sequencing reports came on December 2 making him one of the first two persons in the country to test positive for the Omicron variant.
All primary 24 contacts and 240 secondary contacts have been traced and samples were taken by Urban Primary Health Centre officials. All have tested negative.