COVID-19 third wave; Remain alert as next 100 days crucial, cautions LG Sinha

Srinagar : Cautioning that the next 100 days are crucial as per experts, Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory (UT) Lt Governor Manoj Sinha asked officials and people to remain alert and adhere to COVID protocols to prevent the third wave by ensuring that no congregation with more than 25 people takes place till then.

“Religious, social and community leaders must be roped in for generating awareness among the people”, Sinha said at a weekly meeting on COVID Task Force, a press release issued by Raj Bhavan here today said.

He said focus shall be on timely inoculation of the second dose and ensuring 100 per cent coverage of 18-44 year age group.

The release said that Sinha chaired the weekly meetings with members of the COVID Task Force, Deputy Commissioners, and Senior Superintendents of Police (SsPs) on the present Covid scenario in the UT.

“Next 100 days are crucial as per the experts’ report. We need to be alert, vigilant and must dhere to Covid protocols to prevent the third wave”, observed the Lt Governor.

Emphasising reaching out to the maximum population to make them aware of the COVID related Standard Operating Procedure (SoPs), the Lt Governor directed the Health and Information departments to come up with a comprehensive district-level plan for conducting IEC campaigns. Divisional Commissioners will monitor the implementation of awareness activities in their respective divisions, he added.

He further asked the DCs and SsPs to rope in religious leaders and community heads for spreading awareness regarding adherence of COVID appropriate behaviour, besides making informative announcements from religious places to create a sense of responsibility on the part of the general public to follow covid protocols and control the spread of the infection.

The Lt Governor laid special emphasis on mobilising the joint teams for effective enforcement on the ground and taking long-term solutions to mitigate the spread of the Coronavirus. Directions were passed to the DCs, SsP to ensure that no congregation takes place with more than 25 people.

On being informed that as many as 5,62,000 vaccine doses are available with J&K, the Lt Governor observed that the availability of vaccines in such large numbers will go a long way in complementing the government’s efforts to achieve the set target of covering 60 per cent of our population by this month.

The dedicated focus must be given on timely inoculation of 2nd dose, besides ensuring 100per cent coverage of the 18-44 age group with the first dose, the Lt Governor told the officials.

While assessing the surveillance activities being conducted in the districts, the Lt Governor directed the district administrations to scale up the surveillance exercises. Contact tracing must be done at a 1:15 ratio to break the spread chain of the virus, he added.

The Lt Governor passed specific directions for uploading all covid related data at the earliest, besides increasing testing and awareness activities in areas with high positivity rates.

While taking a district-wise thorough assessment, the Lt Governor sought the present standings of the districts in respect of various indicators and norms set for evaluating the COVID situation from Additional Chief Secretary, Health and Medical Education Department, Atal Dulloo, who in turn briefed the chair about the analysis of Covid-19 pandemic including the status of vaccine availability and coverage; real-time reproductive number of cases ( Rt value); availability of vaccine; positivity rate; daily trends of COVID 19 cases & testing done.

He informed that more than 51 lakh population has been inoculated with 1st dose till date. It was further informed that the remaining districts viz Kupwara, Srinagar, Doda, Kathua, Reasi, and Udhampur were yet to achieve saturation of 1st dose in 45 and above age group are also nearing the 100 per cent coverage.

The Lt Governor also sought the status of the covid containment efforts of the Administration, besides the measures taken to vaccinate the targeted population under different age groups and other interventions made to effectively tackle the spread of the coronavirus.