Biggest Covid-19 Spike In J&K So Far, 19 More Test Positive

Medical staff wearing protective gear at CD hospital Srinagar. KO Photo: Abid Bhat

Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday recorded highest spike in coronavirus cases as 19 more people, including 16 from the Valley tested positive, taking the total number of cases in the Union Territory to 94.

Of these, 16 fresh cases were reported from Kashmir, reports said.

Most of the cases recorded today are from the three northern districts of Kupwara, Bandipora and Baramulla. Two people from Shopian and one from Pulwama are also among those who tested positive to Covid-19.

Of them, eight are admitted to Government Medical College (GMC) Baramulla, five in SKIMS Soura and three at Chest Disease Hospital, one of the Covid-19 designated management facilities.

A 66-year-old man from Heeri village of Kupwara, his wife and a young son are among the six people who tested positive to coronavirus today. Three others include two women from Handwara, and a man from Tangdhar.

“All of them have history of stay at Markaz Nizamuddin New Delhi. They were already under quarantine but as per protocol, contact tracing is being carried out on a war footing. All of them are doing well by God’s grace and we wish them a speedy recovery,” Deputy Commissioner Kupwara Anshul Garg told news agency GNS.

The four cases from Bandipora include two men in their forties who had travel to Jammu and participated in a religious function while two others—30-year-old man and a teen are contacts of previous Covid-19 patients.

In Baramulla, the three new cases are relatives of the Covid-19 patient, a teacher by profession, whose father died of the infection recently. The trio includes teacher’s wife, their daughter and a relative.

A couple from Shopian, who had returned from Saudi Arabia on March 16, also tested positive to virus, the local news agency reported. In the neighboring Pulwama district, a man who had come in contact with a Tabligi Jamaat member tested positive to coronavirus today.

Earlier in the day, three people from Udhampur were declared positive to Covid-19 by the administration.

“Three more positive cases reported today from Narsoo, Udhampur. All contacts of a positive patient from Udhampur with travel history abroad,” Principal Secretary Planning, Information and Government Spokesperson, Rohit Kansal tweeted.

Meanwhile, the daily media bulletin release by the government today said that 28545 travellers and persons in contact with suspected cases have been put under surveillance, including 10606 persons in home quarantine, 682 at hospital quarantine, 86 in hospital isolation and 12795 under home surveillance.

“Besides, 4376 persons have completed their 28 days surveillance period. Till date 1397 samples have been sent for testing of which 1250 have tested as negative, and 55 reports are awaited till April 04, 2020,” the official handout read.

The handout also urged religious leaders not to allow and carry any social ceremony including solemnizing marriages at religious places that can defeat the purpose of social distancing and make people vulnerable for Covid-19.

Situation Is Under Control

As the Valley saw a major jump in coronavirus cases on Saturday, the Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, Pandurang K Pole said that the situation was under control and the administration was prepared for any exigency.

During a meeting with the KCCI representatives and members of civil society groups here today, Pole said that Covid-19 suspects, who have foreign travel history and are currently under quarantine, will be released, in case they test negative, within three days, an official handout said. All of them, he said will be put under home quarantine for 14 days.

Div Com also informed the civil society and trade body members that at present, positive Covid-19 cases have come from contact groups and all of them have been traced and quarantined.

According to the statement, the Div Com said that the administration has dedicated Chest Disease hospital, SKIMS Soura and Bemina in Srinagar besides sub district hospitals of Pattan and Sopore and one building each at other district hospitals exclusively for COVID-19 disease.

Pole further informed them that Kashmir University’s Zakura Campus and NIT Hazratbal, with 300 bed capacities each, have also been earmarked for administrative quarantine.

Regarding availability of ventilators, he said that only 5% to 7% coronavirus patients need ventilators and the Valley has sufficient stock to cater critical cases. For quick transportation, adequate numbers of Critical Care ambulances have been deployed at all COVID-19 hospitals, the Div Com said.

“The overall situation is under control in the valley and there is no need to panic and that the administration is prepared for any exigency,” Pole added.



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