Corona cases surge in Chittoor
- The district has crossed 800 cases while Tirupati accounts for 128
- More samples are being tested in the district and hence more cases, says DM&HO
- Imposing restricted business hours for shops is being contemplated, says TMC Commissioner
- People without mask on roads will be slapped with huge fines hereafter
Tirupati: There has been a steep spike in number of corona positive cases in Chittoor district after the easing of lockdown restrictions. The cases have been alarmingly increasing in the pilgrim city and the trends are showing that the cases will go up exponentially.
As on Saturday morning, Tirupati city accounts for 128 cases in which 94 are active cases. With this, Tirupati city surpassed Srikalahasti town which has 119 cases. During the lockdown period, Tirupati city proved to be safe as it recorded the cases in single digit only. By May 18 there were 12 positive cases in the city which have gone up to 111 by June 20.
An official said that the district tally has already crossed 800 mark which they expected to reach by June 24. With this speed, by June 24, the figure may cross 1,600 and by month end to 2,500-3,000 positive cases.
On Saturday, the district recorded 86 positive cases by afternoon itself and it is everybody's guess about the final tally for the day. There was a fear that if transport resumes to its full capacity, the situation cannot be imagined in view of the heavy influx of pilgrims.
District Medical and Health Officer Dr M Penchalaiah has said that this trend was expected. "As we are doing a larger number of tests naturally there will be more positive cases which will see more containment zones and this will contain the spread of virus. The district has an advantage of having more testing capacity. So far, 55,000 samples were tested in the district," he explained.
Another reason for more cases was that the district has two state borders. Most of the cases are found from those who came from Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. Even though the surveillance was effective at main borders, there were several other routes through which people have been entering into district which may be difficult to monitor.
The attitude of people has to be changed and they need to protect themselves by wearing proper masks and following physical distance, he opined.
Tirupati Municipal Corporation Commissioner PS Girisha said restrictions will be strictly implemented in containment zones. As of now, 22 wards were made containment zones. In other areas, people's cooperation is important.
Another lockdown type of decisions may not be possible here in view of Tirumala temple.
But, they have been contemplating some other ideas like implementing restricted hours for shops. A decision on these can be taken only after the Collector gives his nod. He also made it clear that Corporation and Police officials will work together to effectively monitor the situation and those who come out without masks will not be spared from imposing huge fines.
Meanwhile, Collector Dr N Bharat Gupta has focussed his attention on providing required infrastructure with the huge increase in cases. He reviewed with doctors in Ruia hospital and instructed to shift about 100 patients to Sri Padmavati Covid care centre.