Coronavirus Pandemic

Covid-19: India asks Kerala, Maharashtra to consider night curfews

Reuters/New Delhi
Filed on August 27, 2021
People who were inoculated sit under observation during a drive in facility for Covid-19 vaccination at a car parking area of a shopping mall in Kochi. — AP

The two states account for more than 75% of the country's total Covid-19 cases

India has asked the states of Kerala and Maharashtra to consider night curfews in areas with high Covid-19 case numbers as the country reported more than 40,000 new infections for a second consecutive day on Friday.

Cases fell to a five-month-low of 25,166 in the middle of the month but have risen sharply in the last three days, mainly in Kerala, which recently held a large festival during which families typically come together.

India reported 44,658 new Covid-19 infections on Friday, taking the total to 32.6 million, the most in the world after the United States. The death toll rose by 496 to 436,861.

Kerala, on India’s southern tip, has accounted for nearly 60 per cent of the new coronavirus cases in the past week and more than half of the total active cases, followed by 16 per cent in the western state of Maharashtra.

“More efforts would be required to arrest the increase in infections,” the Ministry of Home Affairs said in a statement after its secretary held a meeting with the two states.

“This would require adequate intervention in geographical areas having higher infection, through measures such as contact tracing, vaccination drives and Covid-appropriate behaviour.”

The ministry also said that the states had been asked to “explore the possibility of placing night curfew in areas of high positivity” and assured additional supplies of vaccines.

India has so far administered more than 611 million vaccine doses, giving at least one dose to more than half of its 944 million adults. The required two doses have been given to about 15 per cent.

India administered jabs to nearly 10 million people on Friday, the highest since the country launched the vaccination drive in the middle of January, government data showed.

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