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Home / Pune News / Pune sees spike in fresh cases post Diwali, early indication of ‘second wave’

Pune sees spike in fresh cases post Diwali, early indication of ‘second wave’

Punekars were found to be roaming without masks and even spitting at crowded places during the festive season.

pune Updated: Nov 21, 2020, 17:05 IST
Steffy Thevar
Steffy Thevar
Hindustan Times, Pune
Crowd seen on Bajirao road in Pune. Despite the administration’s repeated messages to residents to follow respiratory hygiene and social distancing norms in public places, Punekars were found to be roaming without masks and even spitting at crowded places during Diwali period.
Crowd seen on Bajirao road in Pune. Despite the administration’s repeated messages to residents to follow respiratory hygiene and social distancing norms in public places, Punekars were found to be roaming without masks and even spitting at crowded places during Diwali period. (HT FILE)

Pune: Post the five-day Diwali festive season, Pune district has reported an alarming number of new Covid-19 cases indicating early signs of the much anticipated second wave of the virus. Despite the administration’s repeated messages to residents to follow respiratory hygiene and social distancing norms in public places, Punekars were found to be roaming without masks and even spitting at crowded places.

The central team during its visit in October had warned the administration of a possible second wave post Diwali, following which the local authorities had started preparations based on the state government’s strategy paper for the second wave. The administration, including the city mayor, have repeatedly warned citizens to not let their guard down, but markets on Laxmi road, Tulsibaug and Mandai areas were found to be crowded throughout the week before Diwali which could have possibly led to the spike in fresh cases, according to experts.

Pune district recorded a declining trend in cases prior to Diwali since the second half of October. The district saw the highest active cases on September 16 when 82,172 were still undergoing treatment for Covid in hospitals or were in home isolation. The number of active cases continued to drop as more people were discharged as compared to fresh cases being reported. However, post Diwali, the number of new cases rose leading to more number of active cases. The city that reported a daily average of 200-300 new cases in 24 hours in the week prior to Diwali found itself burdened with above 500 positives since the festival.

Dr Subhash Salunkhe, epidemiologist and chairman of the state technical committee on communicable diseases, said, “This is exactly what we had anticipated and what we are witnessing. The cases are rising drastically. Although, we do believe that the severity of the second wave would not be as much as the first one as we are seeing in European countries, however, there is still a sizable population in the city which has not yet been exposed to the virus which is still as much susceptible as they were earlier. So, we need to be more careful. Even after the vaccine comes in, it will take time to reach the last person in the line and so we much not behave irresponsibly.”

Pune mayor Murlidhar Mohol tweeted that Pune is seeing a spike in cases and citizens need to strictly follow safety norms.

ht epaper

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