J&K Has Vaccinated 50 Lakh People: Govt

A healthcare worker administers a jab of covid-19 vaccine to a man in Tosa Maidan meadow in Central Kashmir's Budgam district | KO file photo by Abid Bhat

Srinagar: The Jammu and Kashmir government has vaccinated nearly 50 lakh people, forty percent of the Union Territory’s population with the first dose, while 1.62 lakh tests per week are being conducted with 0.2% positivity rate, an official spokesperson said Thursday.

He said these details were shared during a high-level meeting chaired by the Union Home Secretary, Ajay Bhalla to review the public health response to COVID-19. Bhalla, he said, urged all Union territories to vigorously follow the strategy of testing, tracking, and treating COVID cases in their jurisdictions, besides, focusing on speedy vaccination of the eligible population towards successful containment of the COVID pandemic.

Chief Secretary, Jammu & Kashmir Dr. Arun Kumar Mehta along with Additional Chief Secretary, Health & Medical Education Department, besides Chief Secretaries/Administrators of other Union Territories also participated in the meeting.

“It was informed that Jammu and Kashmir is conducting 1.62 lakh tests per week with 0.2% positivity rate. The UT registered 999 cases and 9 COVID-related deaths in the last week,” the official spokesperson said.

The Union Home Secretary, he said, advised Jammu and Kashmir to focus on administration of vaccination to eligible population in a decentralized manner through dedicated day-specific and vaccination centre-specific targeted drives.

Bhalla, he said, stressed on speedy administering of first doses to the unvaccinated population while ensuring second dose of vaccines to eligible population in time.

“So far, Jammu and Kashmir has vaccinated approximately 50 lakh people constituting 40% of its eligible population with the first dose. The vaccinated population also includes 100% vaccination in above 45 years age category and 31% vaccination in 18- 45 age category,” the official spokesperson said.

Giving a brief of the measures being taken in J&K to contain the spread of COVID, the Chief Secretary, he said, informed that the Government has been vigorously enforcing COVID Appropriate Behaviour (CAB) and conducting high numbers of tests and vaccinations for early detection and containment of COVID virus.

Mehta, he said, also requested the Central Government to provide 60 lakh additional doses of vaccination so as to enable the UT to universally vaccinate its eligible population at the earliest.

“Later, the Chief Secretary directed the Health & Medical Education Department to focus on contact tracing of COVID patients and ensure quarantine of suspected cases to prevent spread of infection among the general population. The Department was asked to ensure strict enforcement of CAB and imposition of graded-penalty on habitual defaulters,” the official spokesperson said.

Further, he said, the department was directed to undertake machinery and equipment audit and ensure their functionality along with sufficient availability of technical manpower, besides, organizing district-level mock drills for establishment of micro containment zones and enforcement SOPs thereof.

While reviewing the COVID situation in the Union territories, the official spokesperson said that Home Secretary stated that the UTs have witnessed a constant decline in cases over the past few weeks.

“The new cases reported and COVID fatalities have come down to 4,244 and 54, respectively over the last two weeks,” Bhalla said, as per official spokesperson.

“The Home Secretary asked the UT Administrations to remain in a state of readiness to mitigate future surges, besides undertaking a combined strategy of test-track-treat COVID cases, micro containment of emerging hot spots, speedy vaccination, enforcement of COVID appropriate behaviour, and ramping up of COVID dedicated medical facilities for successful containment of the disease,” he added.

J&K Logs 128 New Cases, 1 Death

Meanwhile Jammu and Kashmir reported on Thursday 128 fresh cases of novel coronavirus while one more person succumbed to the deadly infection in the Union Territory during the last 24 hours.

While 90 fresh cases were reported from Kashmir Valley, the remaining 38 were detected from various parts of the Jammu division, taking the total number of people infected since the outbreak of pandemic last year in J&K to 322142, officials said Thursday.

Giving district-wise details, the officials said that Srinagar reported 42, Baramulla 2, Budgam 9, Pulwama 7, Kupwara 9, Anantnag 2, Bandipora 4, Ganderbal 9, Kulgam 6, Jammu 4, Udhampur 10, Rajouri 5, Doda 6, Kishtwar 6, Poonch 4 and Reasi 3 new cases of Covid-19. Four districts of Kathua, Samba, Ramban and Shopian reported no new case of coronavirus.

Regarding the death, officials said, it has been reported from Jammu division. With this, 4386 people have fallen victim to the pathogen in J&K—2148 in Jammu division and 2238 in Kashmir.

Moreover 83 more COVID-19 patients have recovered, 10 from Jammu Division and 73 from Kashmir Division, they said.

There were also two new confirmed case of mucormycosis (black fungus) reported today. So far 37 black fungus cases have been confirmed in J&K, the officials added.

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