NEW DELHI: Top authorities on Friday warned that a third Covid-19 wave could strike the country and peak higher if the restraints and measures being undertaken now to control the second wave of the infectious disease are dropped or eased without caution.
In a press briefing by the Union health ministry, VK Paul, member, health, Niti Aayog who heads the country’s Covid-19 national task force underlined that the pandemic situation had not improved because of the virus behaviour but because of the measures taken to curb its spread.
“If we again start doing what we were doing as a society in December, January, the situation can again go into a difficult phase,” he said. “More of that (not maintaining Covid appropriate behaviour) we do, higher will be the wave but if we proceed slowly and continue the tightrope walk, the wave will be small..maybe there will be no waves at all," he said.
The figures shared by the government on Friday showed that there has been a 68 % decline in daily cases from May 7.
Also, around 377 districts are reporting less than five % test positivity rate and 257 districts are reporting more than 100 daily Covid-19 cases---all signs that the pandemic is now under control in many parts in India.
Paul however insisted that this is not happening automatically. “ There are no crowds.. a price that we pay but we have made it difficult for the virus to travel. But we have to remember that when the peak is declining, if we start doing what we were doing in January, it will come back again. This is mathematically valid and also valid by common sense," he stressed.
Many experts have said that while a third wave of the pandemic is a real threat and could occur given the still large number of people who may be susceptible to the virus, it is difficult to predict its timing and intensity.
Some doctors have even predicted that the third wave, when it arrives, maybe even tougher for children who have largely been unaffected so far and may be left completely uncovered through vaccination coverage but the government authorities and other experts have dismissed these concerns.
Paul, however, maintained that the government was preparing for the worst-case scenario and guidelines on upgrading medical infrastructure for kids will soon be shared with states.