NEW DELHI: Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla on Wednesday reviewed the COVID-19 situation in the Northeastern states and all Union Territories (UTs) in the wake of spike in coronavirus cases there. The review came as 45 of the 73 districts that reported over 10 per cent COVID-19 positivity rate in the country over the last one week are from the Northeastern region.
"The union home secretary chaired a meeting here today to review the COVID-19 situation in all the Northeastern (NE) States and Union Territories (UTs)," a home ministry statement said. During the meeting, the current status and trends on the active cases, Case Fatality Rate (CFR), Case Positivity Rate (CPR) and vaccination status in respect of all the UTs and NE states were discussed, it said.
It was also noted that out of 73 districts in the country with CPR above 10 per cent, 45 are in the northeast, where strict containment measures need to be taken as per extant guidelines, the statement said.
The home secretary emphasised to follow five-fold strategy of Test-Track-Treat-Vaccinate and COVID appropriate behaviour, as has been laid out in the home ministry order dated June 29, 2021. The north-eastern states and UTs were advised to strictly monitor the situation at district and city level and take timely corrective measures, wherever any early sign of surge is noticed.
For those districts identified with high case positivity and higher bed occupancy, State and UTs may consider imposing restrictions in a calibrated manner. Strict enforcement of COVID-appropriate behaviour was reiterated and it was advised to involve political leaders and civil society organisations.
The meeting was attended by Chief Secretaries, Director Generals of Police and Principal Secretaries (Health) of these States and UTs. Member (Health) NitiAayog, Director NCDC and senior officers of the MHA and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare were also present.
According to the Union Health Ministry, 73 districts in India reported a positivity rate of over 10 per cent for the June 29-July 5 week. Sixty-one per cent of these high-positivity districts are from the Northeastern states -- Arunachal (Pradesh (18), Manipur (9), Meghalaya (6), Tripura (4), Sikkim (4), Nagaland (3), and Mizoram (1).
In the region, Manipur (5,974) has the highest active cases followed by Meghalaya (4,354), Tripura (3,962), Mizoram (3,730), Sikkim (1,869) and Nagaland (1192).
The Central government had last week also dispatched multi-disciplinary teams to Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur and Tripura, besides three other states, to asses the public health situation there and advise remedial action to the state governments concerned.
The central government has been deputing teams from time to time to visit various states and UTs for interacting with the state and UT authorities and get a first-hand understanding of the challenges and issues being faced by them so as to strengthen their ongoing activities and remove bottlenecks, if any, officials said.
The central teams make assessment of the situation and suggest remedial actions on public health activities to the respective state governments.