New Delhi, November 3

Nearing the festive season, the government on Tuesday said, that the coronavirus pandemic was overall “under control” despite a rise in cases being witnessed in Delhi, Gurugram, Faridabad, Kerala, West Bengal, and Manipur.

Noting, that COVID active cases have fallen to 54,1405 making up 6.5 per cent of total cases, the Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan, said that while the previously high burdened states Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh were reporting a decline, a spike was evident in Delhi, Manipur, Kerala, and West Bengal.

“Test, track, and treat strategy will not go out of fashion till the overall COVID positivity rate falls below five per cent. This what we have been telling the states. We have also been telling them to guard against a potential future surge in cases during festivals, and to protect past gains,” said the Health Secretary.

India’s recoveries have crossed 76 lakh—which is the highest global recovery.

The national recovery rate has reached 92 per cent, and deaths per million, and cases per million in India, remain among the lowest globally.

Bhushan said, that there had been a continuous decline, nationally, in the average daily deaths over the last seven weeks, and the average daily cases noticed the same.

While the average daily new deaths have fallen from 1,165 from September 16 to 22 week to 513, the average daily cases from October 28 to November 3 have dropped from 90,346 to 45,884.

“Overall the situation is under control, but the rise is seen in Gurugram, Faridabad and NCR regions. Haryana, recently, reported serosurvey results, which showed 15 per cent of people had been affected by COVID. This means 85 pc are still susceptible to the virus, and we must therefore follow COVID appropriate behaviour to break the chain of transmission,” said a member of Health NITI Aayog VK Paul.

He asked people to get tested as soon as a single symptom of COVID appeared.

“Don’t lose time,” said Pual, adding, that masks were a good, and even bigger than vaccines for protection.

“What would be the efficacy of a COVID vaccine? It would be between 50 to 70 pc. Science tells us, that masks are as good and even better protection than a vaccine,” said Paul.

The government further ruled out any punitive laws to enforce COVID behaviour with Health Secretary, saying “we believe in people’s wisdom to take precautions”.

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