The virus is still out there !Stick to the SOPs

The transmission chain is yet to be broken. The virus is just lying low and stretch this understanding a bit and it should be presumed that the there is every possibility of the virus returning in all its virulence and this is where the call for the New Normal becomes all that more important. In the last few days, the number of new cases has seen a marked decline with Manipur reporting less than 300 new cases per day in the last few days. This however should not be taken to mean that the transmission chain has been broken and one just has to look back at the days when the first wave was at its lowest and how the second wave returned to unleash a reign of terror. With many experts pointing to a possible third wave, no chances can be taken and while the mantra of test, track, treat and vaccinate should not be forgotten at the level of the Government or the administration, it is equally important that the there is a corresponding behaviour from the people at the community level and this is to adhere to the Covid Appropriate Behaviour. Restrictions have been eased, not because the virus has been reined in but due to economic compulsion, and this is a point which the people should not forget at all. Step outside only when it is absolutely necessary, maintain social or physical distancing and maintain personal hygiene, that is frequently wash one’s hand with soap and water or with a hand sanitiser and always wear a face mask, that too correctly. It is not for nothing why advisories have been issued for people to even wear the face mask while inside one’s own house, especially if any family member test positive. This should sum up how contagious the virus is and Covid appropriate behaviour is the only way for the people to take the fight to the virus.
The interesting question is whether people are sticking to the Covid appropriate behaviour or not. Everyday newspapers carry report of the number of violators detained and fined by the police for violating the prescribed Covid appropriate behaviour. This should give a rough idea on how sincerely are the dos and don’ts laid down by the World Health Organisation and Indian Council of Medical Research and enforced by the respective State Governments being followed. Take a look at the roads of Imphal and today there is nothing much to suggest that there is a virus out there ready to infect anyone and this is where the call for the New Normal becomes all that more important. The absolute number of fresh infection has certainly come down in the last couple of days and so too has the daily positivity rate but yet it is disturbing to note that some hill districts continue to notch up daily positivity rate which is definitely on the higher side. Just to cite an example, on September 14, Noney district reported only 4 positive cases, but that four cases were detected out of only 35 samples tested, taking the daily positivity rate to a high of 11.4 percent. Same was the case with Ukhrul which reported only 10 new cases, but that new cases were detected out of only 134 samples tested to take the daily positivity rate to 7.5 percent. Imphal West continues to lead the way and on September 14 the total number of cases detected was 134 out of 1201 samples tested taking the daily positivity rate to 11.2 percent. All way above the WHO prescribed positivity rate of below 5 percent. A strong statement that the virus is still out there.