Karnataka COVID blast: Weekend curfew lifted, night curfew, other curbs to stay amid surge in cases
After public outcry demanding relaxation like lifting the weekend curfew and some ministers as well as MLAs also pitching for the same, the Karnataka government has removed the 'weekend curfew'. Some ministers in the meeting also have suggested that if the hospital admission goes up, to bring back weekend curfew.
The Karnataka government seems to have buckled under pressure from various associations and the public for lifting the 'weekend curfew'. CM Basavaraj Bommai had called an emergency meeting after over 47,000 new cases and a close to 20 percent daily positivity rate was reported on Thursday.
In the meeting, Health Minister K Sudhakar, Revenue Minister, R Ashoka, Home Minister Araga Jnandra, Education Minister BC Nagesh, BBMP Chief Gaurav Gupta, Expert Committee members and others participated in the meeting. And most of them had appealed to the CM to lift the 'weekend curfew'. It is said as there is growing public anger against the administration, the decision is also said to be a political one.
The government is said to have taken certain parameters like less impact on health even though the infection is more, less hospital admission, fewer deaths compared to second wave and states like Delhi and Maharashtra also going for some relaxation to arrive at the decision of lifting the weekend curfew.
"Today the CM chaired the emergency meeting. Experts from NIMHANS, WHO and others participated and based on the suggestion, the government has lifted 'weekend curfew'. The experts suggested that the hospital admission is less than 5 per cent, and hence this decision,' said Revenue Minister R Ashoka.
The minister also said that there won't be any changes in other rules imposed earlier such as night curfew, 50 per cent seat occupancy rule.
The CM also has sought district-wise reports of Mysuru, Bengaluru Rural, Mandya, Hassan, Tumukuru, Ballari and Dakshina Kannada which have reported high cases after Bengaluru Urban.
Daily cases nearing 50,000 in Karnataka:
As per the latest data from the health and family welfare department, the Karnataka state reported 47,754 cases on Thursday and Bengaluru alone logged 30,540 new cases. The daily positivity rate has gone up further as it touched 18.48 percent. The state reported 29 Covid deaths. IT capital Bengaluru reported 8 deaths. The active cases touched 2,93,231.
Bengaluru and districts reported high cases under strict rules: Experts
As Bengaluru alone has contributed over 70 per cent of daily covid cases, the experts have suggested the continuation of tough rules in Bengaluru. Apart from Bengaluru, other districts that also reported over 1,000 cases daily, are also under scanner.
Decision on schools:
Education minister BC Nagesh had opined that barring Bengaluru, the schools will reopen in other districts. In Bengaluru he said, "Except Bengaluru, Deputy Commissioners along with Assistant Commissioners, Tahsildars and Block Education officers will take a decision to reopen all schools. If there are more cases like over 20 cases in a school, that school will remain closed for one week only. On January 29, we will take a decision on reopening schools in Bengaluru."