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Covid-19 precautions, appropriate behaviour should not be relaxed: NITI Aayog member

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on March 02, 2021

VK Paul, Member-Health, NITI Aayog   -  Shanker Chakravarty

‘People gathering at various events is one reason for recent increase in cases’

Gatherings, weddings and parties are at least one reason for some States seeing a surge in the number of active cases of Covid-19 in the last two weeks and public should avoid these crowds as they could end up being super spreader events, V K Paul, Member-Health, NITI Aayog cautioned on Tuesday.

“We have to remember that public compliance for Covid-19 appropriate behaviour cannot be diluted. We should not take the recent marginal increase in new cases lightly”, Paul said at a regular Covid-19 related media interaction in the capital.

Paul said that the government is also not taking the recent “marginal increase” in new cases in certain States lightly. The Cabinet Secretary had on Saturday emphasised to all the States to ensure that there will be no let up on “our strategy for containment, surveillance, contact tracing, isolation and quarantine. This is the only way other than vaccine that we can break the Covid-19 transmission”.

Rising numbers

From a daily new case level of about 92,000 in mid-September last year, the number has progressively come down to as low as 8,635 in early February. However, in the last two weeks there has been a marginal increase in new cases taking the overall average to 12,286 cases, Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan highlighted..

“Although certain States are seeing a surge in the number of active cases, the fact remains that the recovered cases are more than 97 per cent and active cases are still less than two percent”, Bhushan added. The States where there has been a perceptible increase in number of new cases in past two weeks are Chhattisgarh, Madhva Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnataka, Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Maharashtra.

Maharashtra and Kerala together now contribute to 75 per cent of active cases in the country, Bhushan said. India had 1.11 crore historical cases out of which 1.51 per cent (1.68 lakh) are active cases. There had been 1.57 lakh deaths and as many as 21.7 crore tests have been conducted for Covid-19.

Vaccine registrations

National Health Authority Chairman RS Sharma said that as many as 50 lakh registrations have come on Co-WIN portal between 11 am on Monday to Tuesday noon for the Covid-19 vaccination. He clarified that the registration for vaccine is taking place only through ‘Aarogya Setu’ app and Co-WIN’s portal ‘cowin.gov.in’.

“We have got 50 lakh registrations and about 1 crore people have opted for the vaccination. We have had no glitches in the system. We expect significant increase in the number of vaccinations and we don’t see any problem. Scalability is of concern to us and we are watching”, he added.

Published on March 02, 2021

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