On January 19, the Health Ministry said that the first Covid-19 case in Lakshadweep had been reported, almost a year after the pandemic had hit the country. A team of experts has reached the Union Territory to provide necessary support and assistance in containment activities. The Ministry said that a traveller from Kochi in Kerala had travelled to Lakshadweep on January 4 on a ship. He has been reported as the index case after he was admitted with suggestive symptoms of Covid-19 and tested positive.
So far, 46 primary contacts of the index case have been traced. 31 of them were quarantined, while 14 people have been found positive for the coronavirus and isolated. The Ministry, in a statement, said, “Fifty-six contacts of positive cases detected so far have also been traced and quarantined. The UT Administration has initiated disinfection procedures and intensive risk-communication activity has been operationalised.”
It further added that a central multi-disciplinary team had been sent to Lakshadweep. The team has experts from Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Puducherry; National Institute of Virology, Pune; and Regional Office of Ministry of Health & Family Welfare.
Lakshadweep relaxed mandatory quarantine guidelines two weeks ago
It has to be noted that the first Covid-19 case in Lakshadweep was reported just a few days after the UT revised its Standard Operating Procedures and removed mandatory quarantine guidelines that were arriving on the Island. The Ut administration allowed everyone to visit the Island provided they present a negative RT-PCR report taken 48 hours before travel.
Kerala contributing to 50% of new cases in India
The ‘Kerala Model’ to manage Covid-19 is still struggling to control the increasing number of cases in the state. As per the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the state has reported 6,815 new cases on January 20, while the total number of new cases in India stood at 15,233. Kerala and Maharashtra are contributing to 61% of the overall cases. 18 deaths were reported in Kerala on Wednesday.
Notably, for months, Kerala’s Covid-19 model was lauded across the country. Media houses praised the CPI(M)-led Kerala government in every possible way while ignoring notable work done by other states like Uttar Pradesh in containing the disease. Even the World Health Organization published a report on Kerala’s Covid management in July.