PATNA—Bihar health minister Mangal Pandey has ruled out enforcing fresh “lockdown” even as the surging Covid-19 cases have alarmed the state. The state reported as many as 664 new Covid-19 cases in the past 72 hours.
“The government doesn’t intend to enforce lockdown again, even partially, in the state although we have placed all the hospitals on high alert. Our main focus right now is on increasing the number Corona testing,” the health minister told the media.
The minister said the health department was fully prepared to deal with the Corona cases adding the government was initiating all efforts to win a decisive war against the pandemic.
He said the health department had released Rs80 crore to the Bihar Medical Services and Infrastructure Corporation for the purchase of all the necessary medical equipments to prevent this epidemic.
Departmental approval has been received in this regard. He informed that this amount is being made available from the Corona Elimination Fund under the Chief Minister’s Area Development Scheme.
The minister appealed to the common people to take the Covid vaccine when their turn comes.
“It is completely safe. Apart from the eminent doctors and health professionals, millions of common men too have got themselves vaccinated against Covid-19,” the minister said.
The coronavirus cases have registered an alarming rise in the past one fortnight in Bihar, especially after the migrant workers began returning to their homes to celebrate Holi with their family members.
Majority of the cases have been detected in people coming from states such as Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Punjab and Madhya Pradesh.
According to a report of the health department, the state reported a total of 1,825 cases in the past 10 days since 21 March.
A maximum of 351 cases were recorded on 28 March. Health officials said the current infection rate in the state is even worse that those reported during the lockdown period in May last year.