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The Health Department in Karnataka is on high alert as the number of medical students testing positive for Covid-19 at a medical college in Dharwad rose to 66 on Thursday.

About 50 of the students tested positive on Thursday morning, while the test results of another 100 are awaited.

All the students are pursuing their MBBS at the SDM Medical College in Dharwad city. Sources said that about 200 students attended a get together in the premises of the college a few days ago. All the students had reportedly taken both doses of the vaccine and were showing no symptoms of Covid-19.

Deputy Commissioner Nitesh Patil, who visited the campus on Thursday, said that of the 300 students tested so far, the reports of 66 have returned positive.

"There are 400 students on the campus and we will know the test results of the rest by the evening," he said.

There are about 3,000 staff working at the medical college, and all of them would be tested. Whoever tests positive will be quarantined and treated, Patil added.

"We have already sealed two hostels, and the students whose test results are awaited have been quarantined. We are initiating all possible measures to prevent the infection from spreading. The district health officer is here, and the management of the college has also been cooperative," he said.

Patil further stated that the infection is within the cluster of students and it has not spread outside. "We will control it within this cluster," he said.

The authorities are sanitising the entire campus.

The government and the health department are repeatedly making appeals to the people not to neglect social distancing and to use masks at public places.

It may be recalled that 32 students of the Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya in Kodagu district bordering Kerala had tested positive for Covid in the last week of October.

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