National

High level panel discusses rejig of Covid curbs

Our Bureau Thiruvananthapuram | Updated on August 02, 2021

Political protests, crowding defy protocols

Kerala tested 1.27 lakh samples through the weekend to report 13,894 new Covid-19 cases on Monday at a test positivity rate of 10.93 per cent. But the number of deaths reported over the last few days hit the three-figure mark again at 118, the State Health Department said.

Covid strategy

On Monday, a specially appointed committee of officials and the Chief Secretary were finalising proposals for a new Covid containment strategy after the weekend lockdowns and other restrictions failed to make a dent in the spread of Covid-19.

Sources said the high-level committee has suggested targeted micro-containment of affected areas based on TPR.

Micro-containment seeks to close down wards/panchayats where the TPR is high instead of a massive clamp-down on an entire municipality/corporation as currently practised.

Weekend lockdowns lead to intense crowding on Fridays and Mondays, precisely what authorities wanted to avoid. Shops must operate all days as normal, strictly subject to protocols, the sources said.

Compliance

While reviewing strategy, the government must also order stricter compliance with the crowding norms. All public and private functions including meetings, weddings, funerals/cremation, and place of worships must be regularly monitored and enforcement agencies deployed to keep a strict vigil.

The rising numbers of new cases have not translated into severe cases or hospital admissions, which the committee attributed to increasing vaccination cover. Given this, vaccination should be given a top priority. These recommendations would come up during the Covid review meeting on Tuesday.

Politicians flouting norms

However, political parties continued to gather to protest in front of the State Assembly over the past few days. It also took out marches to the Secretariat, with the police resorting to use of force to disperse them. Monday was not any different.

Opposition Congress and BJP have been protesting against Education Minister V Sivankutty ‘who had run riot’ in the Assembly in 2015, inviting the wrath of the local courts recently, continuing in the Cabinet. The case is now in Supreme Court, which too has passed strictures against the minister.

Published on August 02, 2021

Follow us on Telegram, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Linkedin. You can also download our Android App or IOS App.

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

You May Also Like