BMC Alarmed by 10-12% Rise in Covid-19 Cases in Mumbai

Maharashtra’s civic body Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has admitted that there has been a sharp rise in virus cases in the state and decided to keep its jumbo Covid-19 care centres open till March 31.

Suresh Kakani, additional municipal commissioner in-charge of the BMC’s public health department, told India Today that there has indeed been a rise in cases over the last couple of days. “Seeing the rise we felt that if there is a further increase in numbers, then admitting people and treating them will be easier in the jumbo centres hence the call has been taken,” he said.

Maharashtra registered 4,092 fresh Covid-19 cases on Sunday, which took the state’s infection count to 20,64,278, while 40 fatalities pushed the death toll to 51,529, the health department stated. A total of 1,355 patients were discharged during the day. With this, the recovery count in the state grew to 19,75,603.

Mumbai reported over 600 cases after over a month which, according to the civic body, is a 10-12 per cent rise in cases.

Kakani said new lockdown restrictions may not be imposed again in Mumbai if people continued to cooperate with the authorities. “If people cooperate with us then there would not be any need for fresh lockdown or restrictions. This is what I would say. But we have said from Day 1 that if the numbers rise with the resumption of local trains we will have to put in strict measures as well,” he was quoted as saying.

In the wake of the surge, the BMC has started deploying mobile COVID-19 testing vans in some pockets of Dharavi fearing a possible resurgence in infections. G North ward, which comprises Dharavi, Dadar, and Mahim, has recorded a weekly growth rate of 0.12 percent.

A TOI report quoted officials as saying that some high-risk contacts were avoiding testing as they feared that the mandatory 14-day quarantine will lead to a loss of income.

The state last recorded 4,000-plus cases (4,382) on January 6 and the city recorded (607) daily cases on January 14, exactly a month ago.

The report stated that the tate officials attributed the rise to higher testing over the weekend. However, while an average of 54,000 tests were carried out last week, it dropped to 48,000 during the weekend. The state Covid-19 task force as well as the central team that visited recently have recommended more testing in 14 districts with a higher positivity rate.

The Maharashtra government recently made RT-PCR test mandatory for travellers from Kerala, which has been reporting a high number of Covid-19 cases, to check the spread of the viral infection in the western state.

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