AFTER a period of drastic decline when it seemed that Covid-19 pandemic is by and large over, India’s daily Covid tally surged again on Monday as 17,073 new cases were reported in the last 24 hours. Maharashtra has seen a huge rise in tally with reporting of 6,493 fresh infections. Monday’s cases have seen a 45% jump from Sunday when 11,739 people tested positive for Covid. The active cases in the country have now climbed to 94,420. Twenty-one more patients have died and with this, the cumulative count of deaths stands at 5,25,020.
If anything this shows that the pandemic is once again trying to take root and if people don’t take care, things could once again go out of hand. The cases could spiral again triggering the fourth wave. As things stand, people have given up using masks. Hardly anyone follows Standard Operating Procedure. And there is a reason for that. India has witnessed fewer cases in recent months. And so has Kashmir. But now cases have witnessed a slight rise in the Valley also. Director SKIMS Prof. Parvaiz A. Koul has, however, asked people not to panic while advising observance of Covid appropriate behavior t preempt further spread of the infection.
The union government has already embarked on a massive programme to administer booster doses. However, at 2 percent Covid booster dose coverage is among the lowest globally. This is when 25 percent of the people across the world have received a booster shot. The US has administered 30 percent of its population with a booster shot, UAE (53 percent), UK (59 percent) and even Pakistan has covered 3.3 percent of its population with the third dose of the covid vaccine.
Meanwhile, cases in India are rising once again. It is thus premature to rule out more Covid waves and we have to be prepared for them. The world has been through several successive waves of the pandemic which have infected millions and claimed hundreds of thousands of lives. With the abating of the Omicron wave which broke out early this year, there was a temporary sense of relief across the world. The economies started re-opening in most parts of the world. But fresh surges in some countries should be a warning that the virus is here to stay for some more time. In fact, it has already become endemic now.
So far, Covid-19 has turned out to be a very stubborn virus. Despite full vaccination by a large mass of people across the globe, the outbreaks have not stopped. Here’s hoping that the new Covid variants become milder so that people can live with them. But meanwhile, the governments and the people can’t afford to let their guard down. There is a need to continue to follow Covid precautions in public.
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