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Taking precaution, no plans to close down schools: Minister

With the steadily rising numbers of Covid-19 cases, along with Vadodara reporting two Omicron cases on Friday, Gujarat Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Nimisha Suthar said that the government was "taking best measures" to avert another Covid-19 wave.

By: Express News Service | Vadodara |
December 19, 2021 3:37:04 am

Gujarat Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Nimisha Suthar on Saturday said that the state government was taking “all necessary precaution” in view of the Covid-19 numbers but has no plans to close down schools until the situation so necessitates.

Suthar, who was in Vadodara to visit two injured employees of Gujarat Fluorochemicals Limited (GFL), who are undergoing treatment at a private hospital for burns suffered during Thursday’s blast at the refrigerant manufacturing plant, was fielding questions pertaining to school students testing positive for the Covid-19.

With the steadily rising numbers of Covid-19 cases, along with Vadodara reporting two Omicron cases on Friday, Suthar said that the government was “taking best measures” to avert another Covid-19 wave.

“Even in the earlier waves of Covid-19, the government took all important measures to isolate and contain the positive cases. The government has issued guidelines of isolation, testing, and even treatment for those testing positive now. We are alert and closely monitoring the cases, even isolating the entire area if necessary,” Suthar said.

When asked if the government is considering the closure of schools that were opened phase-wise earlier this year, after school children have tested positive in many cities, Suthar said that the Covid-19 lockdown has resulted in the loss of education.

The minister said, “During the Covid-19 lockdown, children’s education has suffered and parents of the children have also requested (reopening)… The schools have been opened in consultation with parents after the Covid-19 cases reduced. Any school that sees a student or teacher testing covid-19 positive must immediately take the necessary steps to ensure that the others are not infected… In case there is a rise in the number of cases, the government will take appropriate steps again. We are watching the development.”

Speaking about the vaccination of children and teenagers below the age of 18, Suthar said, “The decisions on vaccinations of children as well as the booster vaccination will be taken by the central government… We will issue directions for vaccinations as we receive the same from the central government in the future.”

During her visit, Suthar met two critically injured employees of GFL and encouraged them to “be positive”. Meeting the two employees personally at the private hospital, Suthar assured the families and the injured victims that the doctors had expressed confidence that the two employees would be “back on their feet within a month”. Seven persons were killed and 22 injured in an explosion inside the GFL premises located in Ranjitnagar in Ghoghamba taluka of Panchmahal district on Thursday.

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