Udayavni Special

Complete lockdown amid Covid-19 not a solution: Kerala Govt

PTI, Jul 28, 2020, 8:49 AM IST

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Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala government on Monday, July 27 said a complete lockdown was not a solution to halt the spread of coronavirus but containment measures in affected areas will be further strengthened as the state’s infection tally touched 19,727 with 702 fresh cases.

“A special cabinet meeting held on Monday decided not to go in for a total lockdown in the state, a line suggested at the all-party meeting last week,” Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said.

He said that the government had also held various meetings, including with all political party leaders, health experts and media editors, and the general opinion was against a lockdown.

“The common opinion was to strengthen the restrictions in clusters to check local transmission, he said adding Police will intervene and take strict action in case of violations. However, as a ‘serious’ situation continued in Thiruvananthapuram district the existing lockdown would remain in place there,” he added.

“The current cluster management and the restrictions in the state should be strengthened. We have also decided to do it accordingly. Restrictions will be enforced strictly as laxity could be seen.

This cannot be allowed. The COVID protocol needs to be followed strictly and the state administration will intervene in case of any violation”, he told reporters.

“Presently, as many as 9,611 people are undergoing treatment for the infection while 10,054 have recovered and over 1.55 lakh people are under observation,” Vijayan said.

In Thiruvananthapuram district, which added 161 cases on Monday,a total of 2,881 people were undergoing treatment for the infection, and 11 of them in ICU and one on ventilator support.

A Chief Secretary-led committee has been constituted to find out if there was a need for any relaxation in the district, where at least 15,138 people are under observation.

About 45 percent of the 12,801 beds available in 101 CovidFirst Line Treatment Centres (CFLTCs) were now occupied, Vijayan said adding more such facility was being prepared and additional manpower will be mobilized.

In the second phase, an additional 229 CFLTCs with 30,598 beds were being made ready, while the third phase will see 480 such centres with 36,400 beds.

Vijayan came down against the act by a group of locals, led by a BJP ward councilor in Kottayam, who obstructed the health workers from cremating the body of an 83-year-old man who died of Covid-19.

“The yesterday’s incident on cremation of a person who passed away due to Covid-19 was a shameful act. The chances of contracting the disease from a dead body is very less. The central government has issued a separate protocol for handling the body and for cremating the remains of a Covid-19 affected person,” he said.

“The health workers were acting as per the protocol and the real problem was caused when a crowd gathered for the unnecessary protest,” he said.

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