The pace of fresh Covid-19 cases being reported in Karnataka accelerated in the past week, with the tally crossing the 2,000-mark Sunday and doubling in just nine days. The state had reported more than 1,000 cases on May 15.
“As of Sunday, 2089 cases have been reported in Karnataka. This includes 654 discharges. 130 new cases have been reported today,” Karnataka Health Commissioner Pankaj Kumar Pandey said.
The trend of returnees from Maharashtra testing positive the most in the state continued on Sunday as well, as 100 cases (76.92%) fell under the category.
Karnataka had reported its first Covid-19 case in the capital city Bengaluru on March 8.
78.79% of cases since May 21 from Maharashtra
As many as 494 cases out of the 627 reported in Karnataka since May 21 are in Maharashtra-returnees, constituting 78.79% of the Covid-19 cases confirmed in Karnataka since Thursday.
The first case of a Maharashtra-returnee testing positive for novel coronavirus was on April 12 in Vijayapura. Twenty-nine more people contracted the infection from the 60-year-old woman.
The numbers rose in the last week, also catapulting Mandya to the second spot among districts with the highest number of cases, after Bengaluru.
As on Sunday, Mandya has recorded 252 cases while the number in Bengaluru Urban district is 266. According to the health department, Mandya also houses the most active cases in Karnataka (226). The district had seen a heavy influx of people from Maharashtra in the past few days.
Meanwhile, some districts that were coronavirus-free till April-end have reported cases since migrants returned to the state in big numbers. These include Haveri, Koppal, Raichur, and Yadgir.
Bengaluru: Commissioner says 36-hour lockdown ‘95% success’
Sunday was Bengaluru’s first weekend shutdown ever since the city eased restrictions in the fourth phase of the nationwide lockdown.
Bengaluru City Police Commissioner Bhaskar Rao told indianexpress.com that the 36-hour lockdown (from 7 pm on Saturday to 7 am on Monday) was ‘a success’ on Sunday.
“In a city with a population of above 1.4 crore people, most citizens stayed at home. I would say the lockdown today was 95% successful. With no violations reported from any police station in the city, the people’s cooperation is heartening,” he said.
Earlier on Friday, Rao had said that the weekend shutdown would have similar norms as that of the first phase of the nationwide lockdown.
“All commercial establishments, including alcohol MRP outlets, textile shops, and those selling non-essential items will be closed during this timeframe. Taxis and autos will not be allowed, if not for emergencies. People must not venture out of their homes even to buy groceries unless it is very urgent,” Rao had said.
Woman delivers baby onboard train from Bengaluru
A woman delivered a baby onboard a train from Bengaluru early morning on Sunday, with the help of other woman passengers, including a doctor.
According to South Western Railway officials, 25-year-old Fozia, who was nine months pregnant, had developed labour pains around 5.30 am while the train reached near Agra on Sunday.
“The woman passenger and her husband had boarded the KSR Bengaluru – New Delhi Special Express. On learning that the passenger is in a medical emergency, a doctor was arranged at Mathura station. However, the patient refused treatment as she feared coronavirus transmission,” SWR Chief Public Relations Officer E Vijaya told indianexpress.com.
Further, an SWR statement read, “A lady doctor who was a passenger in the same train helped in the process of delivering the baby. The delivery was completed near Delhi station. Both the mother and the baby are healthy.”
Transport corporations asked to ferry migrants to railway stations for free
The Karnataka government has decided not to charge migrants for their journey to railway stations to board Shramik Special trains.
In a government order issued by N Manjunath Prasad, nodal officer for migrants in Karnataka, the Managing Directors of Bengaluru Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) and Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) were directed not to charge migrants for their transport to railway stations.
“The mode of reimbursement to BMTC and KSRTC will be communicated separately,” the order read.
Several citizen activists and labour organisations, including the All India Central Council of Trade Unions (AICCTU), had requested the CM to intervene after migrants complained of exorbitant bus fares to railway stations.
Earlier on Friday, the government had decided to bear the travel cost of migrant workers stranded in the state going back to their home towns in Shramik Special trains till May 31.
Bengaluru airport to ensure taxi sanitisation, driver screening before each trip
Stepping up measures to ensure passenger safety as domestic flight operations resume Monday, the Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL) Sunday announced that taxis would be sanitised and their drivers screened before each trip.
Speaking to indianexpress.com, a BIAL spokesperson said that drivers have been instructed to maintain safe distance. Further, they will be encouraged to use hand sanitisers and face masks to make the car a safe space.
As you prepare to fly again; a new experience awaits. Your journey through #BLRairport has been modified to ensure maximum safety at every step. Watch this video to know more about the contactless passenger journey at BLR Airport. #WeAreHereForYou #Contactless #Travel pic.twitter.com/Y9sawKsKqH
— BLR Airport (@BLRAirport) May 24, 2020
“Able-bodied passengers are advised to load their luggage into the car without driver assistance. For elderly citizens and passengers with reduced mobility, drivers will assist while following hygiene measures. Masks are mandatory for both drivers as well as passengers. Passengers without masks will not be allowed to board the taxi,” a passenger advisory issued on Sunday read.
Further, the BIAL spokesperson added, “In addition, staff who manage taxi services at the airport, including KSTDC, Ola, Uber, and other car rental operators, will be screened. Drivers will be screened before arriving at the airport pick-up zone to ensure passenger safety; they will be de-rostered if a fever is detected.”
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