By Arun Pratap Singh
Dehradun, 29 Apr: The Covid surge continues in Uttarakhand and, in the past 24 hours, 6251 fresh cases of Corona have been reported in the state. In addition, 85 Covid related deaths were reported during this period. Dehradun continued to lead with 2207 fresh cases from around 10,470 test samples, which translates to over 20 percent positivity rate. Clearly, Dehradun is facing a severe crisis and this positivity rate underlines the need to ramp up testing to, at least, 20,000 per day. Haridwar with 14,124 tests in the past 24 hours remains at the top with maximum number of tests. Nainital and US Nagar continued their trend of low testing despite directions from the High Court, with 2060 and 2967 tests, respectively. In Nainital, as against 2060 tests, 673 fresh Corona cases were reported, while in US Nagar, as against 2967 tests, 827 fresh cases were reported, which is very high positivity rate. Recoveries continued to be much lower at 3129 as against 6251 fresh cases in the past 24 hours. Pithoragarh turned out to be the district with lowest number of fresh cases at 33 in past 24 hours. The pandemic is spreading fast even in the hills.
Meanwhile, there were reports of officials, whose mobile numbers have been shared publicly, not picking up the phones of people in distress and there were also reports of blackmarketing of essential drugs like Remdesivir and Oxygen cylinders in the state, particularly, in Dehradun. Not only this, the contact numbers shared by the DM, Dehradun, on oxygen cylinders also turned out to be fake. The Uttarakhand High Court has taken very serious note of this and has directed the DM to shared genuine phone numbers of oxygen and drugs suppliers.
While the state government has directed the health officials to supply Corona kits to everyone who has symptoms of Corona even if their test reports might not be available as yet, but there have been incidents where people calling the helpline received incomplete kits with oxymeters and thermometers missing. In some cases, even certain medicines were missing from the kits. The government needs to take cognisance of such negligence and take strict action against the guilty.
By Arun Pratap Singh