Karnataka is “at the beginning of the second wave” of COVID-19 and people’s cooperation to contain the spread of the virus is vital, said Health Minister K. Sudhakar on Sunday.
“Let us join hands to control it because the next two to three months are crucial,” he told reporters. He said he would discuss with Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa the current situation and measures to be taken immediately.
The Minister pointed out that the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) on the pandemic had given clear guidelines to the government and warned of serious consequences if certain activities were not controlled. “We will all be responsible for the consequences if the government and people do not respond to experts’ advice,” Dr. Sudhakar said.
“We have crossed 1,000 cases a day just in Bengaluru. We cannot be in denial any more. My fervent request to people is to adapt COVID-19-appropriate behaviour. Controlling the spread is in the hands of people,” he said, appealing to youth to ensure that the elderly in their households were vaccinated. They should also shun all unnecessary gatherings, whether parties or jatras, he added.
The Minister pointed out that the government had not entirely banned any activity so that people’s livelihood was not affected, while requesting people to exercise caution.
Karnataka has so far not heeded the TAC’s more stringent recommendations such as banning all public functions, especially in closed spaces. The TAC has also suggested closing religious institutions and all schools and educational institutions where there are no exams going on, for at least the next two weeks.
Fears ahead of bypolls
Mr. Sudhakar on Sunday favoured holding an all-party meeting in the light of the upcoming bypolls to discuss how COVID-19 protocols could be maintained during campaigns.
To a question whether election-related activities will also be curtailed, he asked, “Will Coronavirus spare any activity? Will it spare political parties or religious congregations?”