Of late, there has been a relative decrease in the number of covid-19 cases as well as deaths as a consequence of it. In this month so far, Jammu and Kashmir reported around seven thousand new infections of the coronavirus disease, 390 a day on average.
When the pandemic was at its peak in mid-September, this number was around 1000 cases a day. This is a 40% drop in cases in three months. While the wave has been receding since mid-September, even as recently as October and November, Srinagar and Jammu districts still defying the larger trend and reporting rising cases. Of the total 117705 cases in 20 districts, Srinagar cumulatively has 24620 and Jammu 22660 cases. The lowering positive percentage is reflective of a less aggressive spread of pestilence. The death rate of the lab-confirmed cases continues to be 1.7 percent – one out of every 70 lab positives lost life.
According to the World Health Organization, if the positivity rate remains 5% or below for two weeks, a region can be said to be keeping its outbreak under control and is testing adequately. J&K’s positivity rate has been below it and it seems that the regions’ Covid-19 numbers have clearly taken a turn for the better. However, the observations by the Supreme Court that Covid-19 pandemic has spread like wildfire in India owing to the lack of implementation of guidelines and SOPs remain apt. The top court has called for more vigilance and surveillance. All in all the government and the people need to be vigilant and need to get can’t get carried away. Trends in Europe and the United States must serve as a strong reminder of how the situation can quickly go out of hand even if things were controlled after the first spike in the cases. And each subsequent wave outside has been stronger than the one preceding it. As has been right underscored by the top court, there is a need to be vigilant amid possibility of a second wave hitting which may be devastatingly strong, especially given the fierceness of the first wave and ongoing winter conditions. The people must remember that the rolling out of the vaccine by the government is a work in progress. Until there is a viable cure, people of all ages continue to be vulnerable. The situation demands that people must not let down the guard.