State cases 1,82,396; Active 36,067; Discharged 1,45,615; Death 711
GUWAHATI: There has been a steep fall in the COVID-19 positivity rate across the State in the last three days of September. While many view this development as a good sign, some others raise their eyebrows at this sharp fall.
During almost entire September, COVID-19 positivity rate in the State was 6.3 per cent on an average. However, in the last three days of September, COVID-19 positivity rate was just 2.7 per cent. Sources in the department also said that as many as four lakh COVID-19 tests were conducted in the State in the last three days of September, 2020.
Such a less number of positive cases as against the large number of COVID-19 tests conducted have thickened the disbelief among a section in the State.
However, terming the sharp fall in the COVID-19 positivity rate as a good sign, State Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said, "I'll attribute the fall in COVID positivity rate to the masses' awareness and their adherence to COVID-19 protocols. If the people of the State continue to adhere to the guidelines throughout October, by November the number of COVID positive cases will fall drastically. However, the situation may take a turn for the worse if the people of the State come out in large numbers during the Durga Puja."
Health Department sources said that there's nothing to disbelieve in the steep fall in the COVID-19 positivity rate. "We carried out a massive drive in the last three days of September conducting COVID-19 tests, including rural areas, schools etc. Our purpose was to cover maximum people. Maybe, the spread of the virus is more in urban areas and less in rural areas. Our drive was mainly rural area-centric. This gives an indication that our villages are nearly safe. This may be behind the fall in COVID positivity rate. It's indeed a good sign.
"In some schools/colleges we've found many students and teachers testing positive for COVID-19. Educational institutes with more COVID positive cases have been closed. We're now studying the outcome of the massive COVID-19 test drive conducted in the last three days of September. This study is going to help us to decide the future course of action to keep coronavirus at bay."
SCHOOL REOPENING: On Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) allowing the State governments to take decisions on the reopening of schools after October 15, 2020, Minister Sarma said, "We're going to formally reopen schools from November 1, 2020."