COVID-19 2nd wave: Situation going from bad to worse, says NITI Aayog member, Punjab extends restrictions
NITI Aayog’s Member (Health) VK Paul said that trends show is that “coronavirus is still very active, can penetrate our defences and strike back when we think that we have found ways to control it”
The current coronavirus situation in the country is going from bad to worse with the surge in cases and the trends showing that the virus is still very active, NITI Aayog's Member (Health) VK Paul cautioned on Tuesday.
Addressing the weekly press conference, Paul said: "As you have noticed in the last few weeks, the situation is becoming bad to worse. It is a serious cause of concern. In some states in particular, there is a huge cause of worry. No part of the country should be complacent."
Against the backdrop of increasing cases in the previous three weeks, Paul said that the trends show is that "coronavirus is still very active, can penetrate our defences and strike back when we think that we have found ways to control it".
India recorded 56,211 new coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours taking the total tally to 1,20,95,855 on Tuesday. Six states -- Maharashtra, Punjab, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Gujarat -- continue to report a surge in daily new cases.
This is the second peak. India had fought through the first wave of infection six months ago, recording a highest single-day spike of 93,617 cases on September 16, while the highest number of deaths recorded in a day were 1,169 on September 15.
Paul said: "We are facing an increasingly severe intensive situation, more so in some districts but the whole country is potentially at risk. If the cases are more, they will eventually overwhelm the system. The deaths will also occur, even if they are low. If it is business as usual, we will continue to be chased by the virus."
He, however, assured that the country has sufficient capacities in the hospitals, ambulance services and ICU beds are functional. "Dedicated hospitals set up must be re-energised, re-tested and rehearsed so that the load of patient come, we are able to manage it effectively," he said.
Meanwhile, the Punjab government on Tuesday extended restrictions to tackle coronavirus with schools and colleges to remain shut for another 10 days.
On March 19, the Punjab government had ordered the closure of educational institutes besides gathering restrictions till the month-end.
Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Tuesday ordered that all restrictions that are in place till March 31, will now remain in force till April 10, according to a statement.
With agencies input