84-hr lockdown not enough in J&K: Experts
With 11 Jammu and Kashmir districts going into an 84-hour lockdown on Thursday evening, medical experts and social workers said it is not enough to arrest the spread and have sought an extended lockdown.
The decision to impose the lockdown was taken after at least 3,000 cases and 30 deaths were reported in the UT over the last two days. Citing the surge in cases since April, Dr Javid, a senior doctor at Government Medical College, said, “The lockdown should be imposed for at least a week for it to be effective as a lot of critically-ill patients are reporting to the hospital. Hopefully, the lockdown will help bring down infections.”
Another doctor, at a reputed Covid hospital, said the lockdown could prove beneficial. “Imposition of a lockdown had worked last year. This time, too, the government should extend the lockdown, especially in high caseload districts.”
Local journalist and activist Rifat Abdullah said, “If the Jammu and Kashmir government sincerely wishes to save the lives of those already affected with Covid or already hospitalised then a 15-day lockdown or curfew is a must.”
“I have seen the conditions of hospitals. Beds are increasingly being occupied and if the trend continues things may go out of hand. Sadly, despite watching people die, many people are still not following standard operating procedures,” Abdullah.
Recently, some officials had also suggested a complete lockdown in high caseload areas. At present, there are dozens of micro zones in J&K.
People lineup for curfew passes
Hours before the start of curfew many people could be seen lining up outside government offices for curfew passes. “Deluge of calls/messages & deputations at office for Curfew passes even before a #Lockdown comes into force from 7:00 pm today. I appeal everyone again to pl stay indoors. Ensuring Essential services is my duty. Leave that to me. Let’s #BreakTheChain #StriveForSafeSrinagar, (sic)” tweeted Aijaz Asad, deputy commissioner, Srinagar.
The Jammu and Kashmir Police have assured hassle-free movement of doctors and essential staff during the lockdown.
“During lockdown, all police units have been directed to facilitate hassle-free movement of doctors, health workers and essential services,” said Kashmir inspector general Vijay Kumar.
Immediate action needed to contain spread: Tarigami
CPI (M) general secretary Mohammed Yousuf Tarigami has asked the J&K government to take immediate steps to contain Covid deaths and infections. The former legislator said, “The healthcare system across the country and in J&K seems to be on the edge due to a massive increase in the number of patients following the second wave of Covid. A large number of patients are coming to hospital due to which there is shortage of beds, intensive care units (ICUs) and other essential medicines such as Remdesivir in different hospitals across J&K.”
He also flagged the need to ensure uninterrupted oxygen supply in hospitals and the need to keep outpatient departments open. He said that stepping up vaccinations will not affect the rise of the second wave, but will definitely save many lives.