No new Nipah virus infection was reported in Kerala during the day, said Kerala Health Minister Veena George on Thursday evening.
Kerala's Kozhikode is currently witnessing a Nipah virus outbreak that has seen two deaths and six overall cases so far.
As the situation eases in Kozhikode in the absence of any new case, restrictions in parts of the district have also been lifted.
In a Facebook post, George on Thursday evening said that 27 samples were tested on Thursday and all of them turned out to be negative.
George, however, urged people to continue to wear masks and said that those in isolation should remain in isolation for 21 days.
"Today is also a day of relief. No new Nipah cases reported...Currently 981 people are in the contact list. All the 27 test results received today are negative. The health condition of the nine-year-old boy who is under treatment in a private hospital has improved. The health condition of others under treatment is satisfactory," said George in the post in Malayalam, according to a translation provided by Facebook.
Separately, The New Indian Express reported that containment zones have been lifted in nine village panchayats.
"Wards in nine village panchayats of Vadakara taluk have ceased to be containment zones after Kozhikode District Collector A Geetha relaxed Nipah-related curbs imposed in the region. Similar curbs were also lifted from all wards of Feroke municipality and wards 43 to 48 and 51 of Kozhikode corporation," reported The New Indian Express.
However, general restrictions like wearing masks and social distancing will continue, said the report.
Nipah virus is a zoonotic virus, which means that it jumps into humans from animals. However, once a human is infected, the virus can also spread from one to another through close contact. The virus spreads from contact with bodily fluids like urine, saliva, blood, or stool of an infected animal. It can also spread when people eat or drink food contaminated by an infected animal.
"It spreads mainly through fruit bats (also called flying foxes) but can also spread through pigs and other animals like goats, horses, dogs or cats...The best way to avoid Nipah virus is to avoid exposure to sick animals (especially bats and pigs) in areas with known transmission. This includes avoiding food products that an infected animal can contaminate like raw date palm sap or fruit," notes Cleveland Clinic.