Caution and Hope

SRINAGAR district administration on Monday imposed a strict curfew in five areas of the city for 10 days in view of the rising covid cases. The places where corona curfew has been imposed are Lal Bazar, Hyderpora, Chanapora and at least four colonies in Bemina. However, all essential services including all incidental services and activities needed for the smooth functioning of these services shall be allowed to continue, both in the public and private sectors. According to a government notice, around 63 percent of the daily positive cases during these days have been detected from these areas.

Over the last week, Srinagar has witnessed a surge in Covid cases. On Sunday, the J&K recorded 165 cases, the highest daily total in 46 days. Of these 87 cases were from Srinagar. Srinagar district has the highest number of active cases at 592 followed by Baramulla and Budgam districts with 169 and 83 active cases, respectively. The Jammu district, on the other hand, has the highest number of 1,146 fatalities followed by Srinagar with 851 deaths.

Meanwhile, the administration has decided to go ahead with the class 12 annual regular (2021) examinations which commenced from November 9. Being conducted by the J&K Board of School Education, the examination will be participated by around 74000 students. The board has set up 739 examination centres in government and private schools across Kashmir. This is quite a large number of students to be tackled at a time when the Covid-19 pandemic is resurging. So, the administration needs to ensure that a proper physical distance is maintained among the examinees.

That said, at the national level, the fresh cases are progressively going down. On Tuesday, India saw the lowest daily rise in coronavirus cases since early February with 10,126 fresh infections. The effort would be to further bring down the number by accelerating the pace of vaccination. The government is planning to buy 1 crore Zydus Cadilla "needle-free" Covid shots to further bolster the jabbing. On a positive note, India's homegrown Covaxin, which got the WHO approval last week, has been recognised by the United Kingdom and the United States. No quarantine is required for fully vaccinated travellers in Britain as part of new rules effective from November 22.

But in the Valley, the situation currently is not looking good. There is, thus, an urgent need to arrest the growing number of infections by re-imposing restrictions on the movement. And the administration has done well to identify and put under curfew five areas of the city.

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