Even as the number of COVID-19 positive cases in Karnataka reached 67,420 on Monday – 33,229 of them in Bengaluru Urban – Medical Education and COVID-19 in-charge Minister K. Sudhakar insisted that there was no community transmission in Karnataka.
At a press conference on Monday, the Minister said the State government had acknowledged that the number of cases in containment zones were increasing, but he said that they could not term it as “community spread”. He, however, added that an expert committee was constituted to study this and he would be in a better position to field this question when they submit the report.
“Even in Maharashtra, where the cases are more, they have not called it community transmission,” he said. Mr. Sudhakar said that the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) too had said that the pandemic had not reached the community transmission stage in the country. “So, we will go by what the ICMR says as we follow the directions they specify.”
However, medical experts and doctors criticised the Minister for denying community transmission. “At this stage, the government should accept that there is community transmission and encourage people to take precautionary measures. Living in denial will not serve any purpose,” said an eminent doctor from Bengaluru who did not wish to be named.
On Monday, 3,648 new COVID-19 positive cases were reported in Karnataka. Of these, 1,452 cases are from Bengaluru. Meanwhile, the total number of deaths reported in the State on Monday stood at 72, taking the total number to 1,403. With 730 patients discharged on Monday, the total figure stands at 23,795. Of the 42,216 active cases in the State, 580 patients are in intensive care units.