The return of migrants to Uttarakhand may pose a new challenge for the state, with almost 84 per cent of the COVID-19 cases detected in the last 10 days having entered Uttarakhand recently. Also, while cases were earlier reported from plain areas, the recent cases have been detected in hill districts.
Fifteen new cases were detected on Tuesday, and officials said that all of them have history of travel outside the state. Seven cases were reported from Nainital, three from Udham Singh Nagar, two each from Pauri Garhwal and Bageshwar and one from Chamoli.
Additional Secretary, Health and Family Welfare Department, Yugal Kishore Pant said that majority of the 792 samples sent for testing on Tuesday are of migrants. “Testing rate and sampling are being increased for surveillance purpose. Pool testing is also being done,” he said. Sampling will be increased with rise in case load, he added.
An analysis of data from the daily bulletin issued by the Health and Family Welfare Department shows that 43 COVID-19 cases were detected in the state in the past 10 days. Total positive cases in Uttarakhand on May 10 was 68, 21 of them active. The doubling rate was 39 days. Whereas on May 19, the total number of cases detected was 111, 58 of them active. Doubling rate was down to 12 days.
However, most of the cases that tested positive in these 10 days have a history of travel from Gurgaon, Mumbai, New Delhi, Surat and Amravati.
On May 18, a 23-year-old man returned to Uttarkashi district from Gurgaon in Haryana, and tested positive. Similarly, a 20-year-old woman of Nainital district who tested positive had travelled from New Delhi, while a 35-year old man from Dehradun with travel history from Mumbai tested positive.
According to state government data, 1.11 lakh migrants returned to Uttarakhand amid lockdown relaxation, and more than 85,659 of them returned in the last 10 days. While 2,514 people were in institutional quarantine on May 10, the figure increased by 3,148 in 10 days.
Also, 10 days earlier, corona positive cases were reported from plain areas of Dehradun, Haridwar, Udham Singh Nagar and Haldwani, but in recent days cases have been detected from hill districts like Chamoli, Uttarkashi, Pauri Garhwal, Bageshwar and Almora.
Cabinet minister and government spokesperson Madan Kaushik told reporters on Tuesday that more than 1 lakh migrants have reached Uttarakhand. “The number of positive cases has increased after arrival of migrants, and none of them is without a (travel)history. That is a matter of concern, but effort will be to treat all corona positive persons as soon as possible.”
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