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Vikash Sharma

Bhubaneswar: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday appealed the people of the State not to lower guard against COVID-19 as there are chances of rise in the number of infections particularly during the upcoming winter and festive season.

With the festivities round the corner, Patnaik urged people not to congregate at public places and observe Durga Puja and Diwali in their respective homes.

“It was observed that number of COVID-19 cases shot up by almost three times in Kerala after the Onam festival. Experts say that Coronavirus will assume serious proportions during the winter. As Durga Puja and Diwali are approaching, I urge people not to congregate in public places and stay at home, use masks and maintain social distancing,” said Patnaik.

Patnaik warned that it will create serious problems for all if the COVID19 infection rises in the State.

Lauding the contribution of people and frontline health workers, the CM said, “In the last six months, Odisha has been successful in the ongoing battle against COVID-19 and it has been possible due to the cooperation of people.”

However, only a handful of people are violating COVID-19 guidelines which might create problems for all.

In the last 15 days, the daily COVID-19 caseload has started to decline in the state. On September 26, the State reported over 4000 daily cases and now the daily cases have come down to around 2000. The positivity rate in the State has also declined and it will improve further, the Chief Minister said.

Citing the example of Ganjam and Gajapati, which were once COVID hotspots, Patnaik said that due to the dedication of frontline health workers and community participation, there has been drop in cases in these districts.

However, it is not time to lower guard as the character profile of Coronavirus is very critical and all need to be extra cautious, the CM said.

In countries like UK, France and Spain, COVID19 spiked in the month of March and April and it gradually declined. But such countries are experiencing significant rise in positive cases forcing them to resort to lockdown measures again.

“I urge people to follow all the COVID-19 guidelines strictly till the development of vaccine or treatment,” Patnaik added.


(Edited By Bikram Keshari Jena)

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