* Assam on high alert, partial lockdown on the cards
GUWAHATI: For the first time for the last two months (February & March) the State has recorded more than 60 fresh COVID-19 positive cases in a single day.
Out of 12,322 COVID-19 tests conducted on Friday (April 2) 63 persons tested positive. Even though the COVID positivity rate of the State stands at 0.51%, doctors and health workers have warned that there is absolutely no reason to become complacent as the rise of positive cases is slow but steady. More than 30 people in Guwahati have been infected with COVID-19 in the last three days.
Between March 1 and 31, 2021 the State has been recording 30 to 50 positive cases every day. The similar was the trend in February this year.
"On April 2, only 12,322 tests were conducted. So testing of samples is very low. If it is increased the number of fresh COVID-19 positive might take a sharp rise. Without adequate number of testing we cannot say that the State is safe from the virus infection. Testing is a must to detect fresh cases as many patients remain asymptomatic," a senior doctor at Gauhati Medical College & Hospital said.
From March 31, 2020 to April 2, 2021 altogether 2,18,533 have been tested COVID-19 positive. The total COVID casualty so far is 1,107. Altogether 1,347 COVID positive patients have so far died due to other reasons.
With political parties and leaders dumping Covid safety protocols during the ongoing campaigning for the election campaigns, the Health department is on high alert over the steady rise of COVID positive cases in the State. The Health department recently apprised the State Chief Secretary Jishnu Barua of the COVID situation in the State. Sources in Dispur said fresh anti-COVID guidelines are being drafted which will come into force soon after the third and final phase of Assembly elections conclude in the State on April 6. "Partial lockdown in Guwahati and some other towns might be imposed if the rising trend of COVID positive cases continues," the source said.
The latest guidelines issued by the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) will be strictly followed in the State. As per the MHA guidelines, the State will have to follow 'test-track-treat' protocol to contain the spread of the virus. The MHA has asked States and UTs, where the proportion of RT-PCR tests is less, to rapidly increase the same to reach the prescribed level of 70 per cent or more.