Coronavirus can't be eliminated now, community transmission is there: Report

Updated: Jun 02, 2020, 07:58 IST | Agencies | New Delhi

Report compiled by doctors from the AIIMS and two members of an ICMR research group has been submitted to PM

Migrants walk in a queue after getting off a special train at Howrah station on Monday. Pic/PTI
Migrants walk in a queue after getting off a special train at Howrah station on Monday. Pic/PTI

Community transmission of the Coronavirus infection has been well-established across large sections or sub-populations in the country, a group of health experts, including doctors from the AIIMS and two members of an ICMR research group on COVID-19, has said. The government has maintained that the country has not yet reached the community transmission stage of the disease.

The report compiled by experts from the Indian Public Health Association (IPHA), Indian Association of Preventive and Social Medicine (IAPSM) and Indian Association of Epidemiologists (IAE) has been submitted to the prime minister. "It is unrealistic to expect that the COVID-19 pandemic can be eliminated at this stage given that community transmission is already well-established across large sections or sub-populations in the country," the report said.

"The expected benefit of this stringent nationwide lockdown was to spread out the disease over an extended period of time to flatten the curve and effectively plan and manage so that the healthcare delivery system is not overwhelmed. This seems to have been achieved albeit after fourth lockdown with extraordinary inconvenience and disruption of the economy and life of the general public," they said in the report.

230 deaths in 24 hours
Meanwhile, India's COVID-19 tally on Monday witnessed its highest-ever spike of 8,392 cases, while 230 more deaths related to the infection were also reported in the last 24 hours, according to the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW). The total number of Coronavirus cases in the country now stands at 1,90,535, including 93,322 active cases, 91,819 cured/discharged/migrated and 5,394 deaths.

Airlines asked to keep middle seats vacant

Aviation regulator DGCA on Monday asked airlines to keep middle seats vacant to the extent possible in the wake of the Coronavirus outbreak. However, if a flyer has been allotted the middle seat due to a high passenger load "then additional protective equipment like wrap-around gown of the Ministry of Textile approved standards" must be provided to him or her in addition to a three-layered face mask and face shield, said the DGCA order, which has been accessed by PTI.

Train services resume after two months

Train services partially resumed on Monday as several trains left for their destination according to timetable after a break in train movement since March 25. According to ministry officials, more than 1.45 lakh passengers are set to travel on Monday. According to the Railway Ministry, the first train to depart was Mahanagri Express from Chatrapati Maharaj Shivaji Terminus at 12.10 am for Varanasi. The Railways had announced to partially resume services from June 1.

Gradual easing of norms across states

. All relaxations given by the Centre in the fifth phase of lockdown will be implemented in Goa and further easing of norms would be decided upon gradually, CM Pramod Sawant said on Monday.

. With the fifth phase of the lockdown coming into force from Monday, the Ahmedabad civic body has identified 'micro-containment zones', thereby reducing the number of people covered in such zones to nearly 70,000 as compared to 13 lakh earlier.

. People came out on the streets of Kolkata in large numbers with total disregard to social-distancing norms, while traffic snarl was noticed in many places as the lockdown relaxations come into effect in West Bengal on Monday. Many shops across the city that remained closed during the lockdown also reopened during the day.

. As the Delhi government on Monday removed the restrictions on the number of persons travelling in four-wheelers, two-wheelers, auto-rickshaws, e-rickshaws and other vehicles in the city, Transport Minister Kailash Gahlot urged all to maintain social distancing.

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