Source of half of COVID cases in Vijayawada could not be traced

Authorities caution people about the danger of community transmission

April 18, 2020 11:18 pm | Updated 11:19 pm IST - VIJAYAWADA

Members of the painting artists association draw a painting to create awareness about COVID-19 at Ajithsingh Nagar in Vijayawada on Saturday.

Members of the painting artists association draw a painting to create awareness about COVID-19 at Ajithsingh Nagar in Vijayawada on Saturday.

The Krishna district administration has cautioned people about the danger of community transmission in Vijayawada and other mandals where COVID-19 cases were reported, and the source of transmission of the novel coronavirus in about 30 cases reported in the past couple of days couldn’t be traced.

Collector A.Md. Imtiaz and Commissioner of Police Ch. Dwaraka Tirumala released video messages through which they alerted public about the rise in the number of isolated cases where persons with no travel history or relation with patients contracted the virus.

“So far in the district, 69 cases have been reported and about 59 are from Vijayawada and its surrounding areas. It was found that initially the transmission was through foreign returnees and later Delhi returnees and there are 35 such cases. But in about 30 cases that were reported recently, we were unable to find out where the patients got exposed to the virus. This is an alarming development and everyone should be following social distancing and lockdown norms to contain the spread,” the Collector said.

There are 17 containment zones in the city covering 95% of the municipal corporation area, he added. “Nobody should step out of their houses unless it’s an emergency until May 3 as the situation is worrisome. It is understood that the transmission of the virus could be because of the violation of social distancing norms,” he added. “Though people are not seen on the main roads, we suspect movement in colonies where locals visiting neighbours is going on. All such activities should be avoided at any cost during the lockdown,” Mr Imtiaz said.

Meat shops closed

In view of this, the Collector has asked the police department to ensure that no meat and seafood shops are opened in the redzones of the city. He further asked police to use drones to keep an eye on lockdown violators in the interior areas of the city and increase deployment of police personnel.

Foreign returnee infects seven others

Mr. Tirumala Rao said the source of transmission in many cases reported recently couldn’t be traced. “Some patients say that they have only gone to Rythu Bazaars and grocery store. In one case, the patient visited medical shops and hospitals to supply saline bottles, and where he got exposed to the virus is not known yet,” he said.

“In another recent case, a foreign returnee tested positive for the virus after nearly 28 days. His mother too tested positive after two days and later six of his neighbours also tested positive. In that particular colony, there are 10 cases now. This is a highly alarming situation,” Mr. Rao said.

Violators warned

People found moving on the roads after 9 a.m. without valid reason would be booked and their vehicles would be seized. “I appeal to the youth not to venture out unless it is important or emergency. Once booked in criminal cases as per the law, you will have to face the consequences in your career which can be avoided by staying home,” Mr. Rao added.

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