Covid-19 Rears Its Ugly Head Again    

Recently, Jammu and Kashmir has seen a surge in covid-19 cases. On March 26, J&K recorded highest single-day spike in cases this year with 210 reported—41 in Jammu and 169 in Kashmir—. As can be seen in other states including neighboring Punjab and Himachal Pradesh, there has been a worrying surge in the number of the covid-19 cases.  In overall scenario, India saw 59,118 new infections in a day, the highest single day rise so far this year, taking the nationwide tally to 1,18,46,652, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Friday (March 26).

Virologists have been saying all along that the second wave was expected as the third serosurvey conducted by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) between December 17, 2020, and January 8, 2021, showed that only 21.4 percent of adults had been exposed to the virus. According to the results of the survey, a huge chunk of the population is still vulnerable to the virus, the experts warned.

Also on worrying note, some experts also believe that new variants of the ravaging virus have spread in India, particularly in Maharashtra and Punjab, the two states recording some of the sharpest increase in cases over the last month.

While the health authorities are rule out the variants being responsible for the rapid increase, experts believe a correlation is likely especially what transpired elsewhere across the globe with virus mutating. As per the experts, the variant of the virus arises when it picks up multiple changes in its genome. It is natural for any virus to mutate when as it spread within a population. While molecular clock calculation, expert estimated that the virus picked up two mutations on average every month, it can also picks up a combination of mutations that could change how it affects a person, becoming less or more infective or lethal during the course.

While health authorities are required to step up genome surveillance, the citizen should adhere to the covid-19 appropriate behavior, always use mask, maintain social distancing and avoid crowded places.  Some worrying aspects have already set in, including in Jammu and Kashmir’s neighborhood. The Himachal Pradesh government on Friday closed down all educational institutions, including universities, colleges, technical institutes and schools except for those holding examinations. The decision comes as the state faced a faster spread of infection and if people of J&K continue to give a go by to appropriate behavior and government fails to act as demanded by the situation, it would not take long that schools and colleges are to be shut and lock down forced to prevent the spread of the virus.

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