'A single mistake': PM Modi's Covid-19 warning at ministers' meet
The photos and videos of crowded places and people roaming about without masks, throwing social distancing to the wind should instil a sense of fear, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Thursday as he met his new council of ministers a day after the Cabinet reshuffle. This is not a time for carelessness or complacency, the prime minister said adding that a single mistake would have far-reaching impacts and would also weaken the fight to overcome Covid-19, news agency ANI reported quoting sources.
His warning comes as the union health ministry, which got a new minister on Wednesday, too expressed its concern over people indulging in "revenge travel" at a time when the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic is not yet over and the threat of a 3rd wave is looming large.
The ministry on Tuesday said the photos of people thronging hill stations are "frightening" as 73 districts across 17 states and Union territories are still reporting a positivity rate of more than 10 per cent. Not only in Shimla, Mussoorie, but people also started crowding local markets in Delhi, Mumbai as well.
"As ministers, our aim should not be to instil fear but to request people to keep taking all possible precautions so that we are able to move beyond this pandemic in the times to come," PM Modi said, expressing concern at the persistently high number of Covid-19 cases being reported from Maharashtra and Kerala.
The second wave of the pandemic which reached its peak in April, May is on its way out now, but experts have warned that the third wave in India might be "inevitable". While the northeastern states are now reporting a higher test positivity rate, cases in Kerala and Maharashtra are also not coming down below a certain point. On Thursday, India's active Covid-19 cases recorded a spike after 55 days. The number of new infections reported on Thursday (45,892) also surpassed the recoveries reported in the same period (44,291), marking a departure from the recent trend of higher recoveries and lower daily infections.