As Jammu and Kashmir on Tuesday witnessed the highest spike in Covid-19 cases with 2,030 testing positive, 1,086 in Kashmir and 944 in Jammu, political parties have accused the government of mishandling the situation and allowing it to go out of hand.
The government said it has enough beds available in the hospitals and oxygen facilities to meet the challenge. However, the government urged people to follow Covid-19 protocols.
National Conference general secretary Dr Mustafa Kamal said the hospitals are swamped with infected persons making it imperative for the government to come up with facilities to treat the critically ill.
“The escalating health crisis and infection, touching new highs with each passing day has again caught the administration off-guard and unprepared. Every time we only hear about meetings being convened on the emerging crisis, but so far nothing substantial has been done by the government. It should come up with a white paper on the number of critical-care beds, vital drugs, ventilators, vaccines available with it,” Kamal said.
At the same time, Kashmir divisional commissioner Pandurang K Pole appealed to the people to maintain proper Covid behavior to prevent the spread of the virus. Pole, while addressing a press conference, said there was enough beds in hospitals and oxygen facilities as a number of new oxygen generation plants have been installed at various health facilities to meet any emergency situation.
He said though the government has taken various measures to contain the spread of the virus, it is a shared responsibility to follow the SOPs in letter and spirit. He said people should avoid going to public places and busy markets unless extremely necessary. Besides, ensure wearing a face mask and maintain social distance, hand hygiene, isolation in case of coming in contact with a positive person. He said a slew of measures have been taken, including rigorous testing. He said more than 7.5 lakh people have received Covid vaccines in Kashmir.
He said that anyone entering Kashmir from outside either by road, rail, or air has been subjected to mandatory Covid-19 testing and allowed to move out freely only after a negative test report. So far, at the Srinagar airport more than five lakh inbound passengers have been tested for Covid-19.
He said some out-of-the-box interventions were also carried out in the Covid-19 mitigation activities which include health education of religious preachers and scholars, TV programmes by experts, testing of high-risk groups such as pregnant women, service providers and people involved in tourism, surveillance of positive cases on home isolation through mobile tracing, creation of WhatsApp groups for monitoring the health of home isolated Covid-positive cases and so on.