Lockdown unlikely in Kerala, COVID-19 review meet to decide on more curbs today

State cabinet
Cabinet meeting. File photo

Thiruvananthapuram: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan will chair a meeting to review the Covid-19 situation in Kerala on Thursday amid yet another spike in cases across the state.

Vijayan, who is in the US for medical treatment, will join the meeting remotely.

A cabinet meet which was convened on Wednesday had agreed that more curbs were needed as the third wave of the Covid-19 was reaching for a peak. Ministers briefed the chief minister about the status of their respective districts at the meeting.

Health Minister Veena George informed the cabinet that the number of hospitalisations were relatively less in the third wave of the pandemic.

The state's health care system is currently equipped with enough ventilators and oxygen reserve to deal with the rising cases, she said.

Only critical patients with low oxygen levels or other comorbidities are admitted to the hospitals now, she added.

While a complete lockdown is off the charts for the Kerala economy which is staggering back to normalcy, the authorities are likely to consider measures like shutting down of colleges, weekend curfew and night curfew among others.

The review meeting will deliberate on the range of restrictions to be imposed on various sectors to contain the spread of the virus. Measures will be imposed to prevent COVID-19 clusters in the state.

The state has been recording an exponential rise in Covid cases in the past few days with even Kerala Government Secretariat and offices of ministers turning into COVID-19 hotspots.

COVID-19 infections in Kerala continued to witness a steep rise as the state on Wednesday logged 34,199 fresh positive cases, taking the infection count to 54,41,511.

Among the districts, Ernakulam reported 5,953 new cases, followed by Thiruvananthapuram with 5,684 and Kozhikode with 3,386.

The new cases included 54 cases of Omicron, a variant of coronavirus, taking the total affected by the variant to 645.

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