Amidst an increasing number of Covid-19 cases in Kerala, officials gathered in large numbers to cast their votes for the Secretariat canteen board election, and visuals of the incident show that many had violated Covid-19 protocols by not wearing masks properly and maintaining social distance.
Kerala, at this moment, records half of the daily national cases, third in the total number of cases, and first in total active cases. With the doubling of cases, Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja has said that the number of daily tests conducted will be increased to detect Coronavirus cases in the state to one lakh compared with an average 50,000-55,000 now.
Earlier, health experts had warned the state government to act immediately, or else the situation would get out of control as the number of Covid-19 cases has doubled in the last few days. Besides, Shailaja, on Thursday, inaugurated the state health agency to converge all government-sponsored healthcare schemes under one roof. She further added that Karunya Arogya Suraksha Padhathi, Karunya Benevolent Fund Programme, and Ayushmann Bharat would come under the state health agency.
Kerala, which was once cited as the role model for management of the pandemic, make up to 44% of Covid cases in the country. The statistics show that the state’s Covid positivity rate is five times the national average and 12 of the 20 worst Covid-affected districts are in Kerala. Ernakulam and Kozhikode take the second and third spot with 10,873 and 8,002 cases respectively. They are only bested by Pune with 13,014 cases, but the situation seems to be improving for Maharashtra. The number of fresh cases has been doubling for Kerala, since the first week of January.
Violation of Covid protocol is not new for Kerala and the state authorities are to be blamed for major instances. Earlier, an extensive violation occurred at Kerala University during the admissions, which cannot be, in good conscience, be fully blamed on the parents and students. The University had arranged for spot admission for all degree courses in all colleges, causing a serious Covid violation in Thiruvananthapuram. The participants had to abandon all notions of Covid protocol and social distancing, as authorities did not even arrange for proper seating or timing. Police intervened and dismissed the event.