COVID-19: Kashmir far from normalcy, patience only way forward

COVID-19: Kashmir far from normalcy, patience only way forward


Afaq Bhat

Srinagar, May 5: Situation in Kashmir is far from normal as the COVID-19 cases are nearing 700 mark.
After many days only 14 persons tested positive for deadly virus in Kashmir on Tuesday, which is lowest in the recent past.
It may be recalled that the Divisional administration in Kashmir last week declined to implement the fresh guidelines that were issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs to amend lockdown.
Soon after MHA issued fresh guidelines, Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, K P Pole, declared that all the ten districts in Kashmir have been classified as “Red Zones” and no relaxation can be given.
An analyst while talking to Precious Kashmir said, “The worst fears of the administration in Kashmir have come true. When the COVID-9 lockdown was implemented initially, officers like Deputy Commissioner Srinagar, Dr Shahid Iqbal Chaudary, had sounded the alarm. They had asked people with travel histories to come forward and reveal the places they had visited during winter. Tracing people with travel histories proved to be a Herculean task for the officials.”
He said, “Now, we are feeling the aftershocks of the people not cooperating with the officials in the early days. During the past 45 days, many people have recovered but the big concern at present is the growing number of patients. Till this number doesn’t decline, Kashmir will continue to reel under the COVID-19 wave. Restrictions in many States and Union Territories have been relaxed to a great extent as the COVID-19 curve has flattened in these places.”
An observer said, “It looks like that the restrictions in Kashmir can continue for one more month as the administration seems in no mood to take any chances. People of Kashmir will have to bear it if they want this pandemic to end. They will have to remain patient till the semblance of normalcy returns.”
He said, “The only silver lining amidst this chaos has been that the death rate has not been that high and the infected people have recovered. The gains of the past 45-days cannot be allowed to go in vain. These have to be consolidated.”
The observer said that recently a brother of a SMC corporator, who had come from outside, tested positive for the COVID-19. “Today the corporator too tested positive for the deadly virus. Authorities were informed by the vigilant neighbours about the return of the corporator’s brother from outside. Had they remained silent, no one knows how many more people would have got affected. The corporator and his brother acting irresponsibly has annoyed many people in Kashmir,” he added.
It’s in place to mention here that the Deputy Commissioner Srinagar without naming anyone tweeted: “After weeks of effective control some fresh COVID positive cases and renewed concerns in Srinagar could be traced to illicit travel. Legal action will happen. Please don’t put whole population to risk.”