THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A decision on introducing relaxations in the next phase beginning from May 18 would be taken depending on the number of cases, said Health Minister KK Shailaja. Speaking to TNIE, the minister said that containment zones would be identified in the state based on the number of cases and the rate of spread. With lakhs of people coming from outside, the state foresees more Covid positive cases.
Any relaxation in restrictions would depend on the rate of increase in such new cases. “If there’s a sudden spike in cases, there wouldn’t be much easing of restrictions. But if we succeed in bringing down the numbers, there will be relaxation in certain aspects of lockdown,” she said.Going by the Centre’s directives, the state government had decided to do away with district-wise zone divisions and instead focus on containment zones.
The current restrictions in place would only be cautiously and gradually relaxed to enable people to carry on with their daily lives. “If there’s a positive case in a panchayat, there’s no need to term the entire district as a red zone. Only a region where infected cases are reported, needs to be containment zone. General activities can be allowed in other places. A ward or a panchayat may be a containment zone. If there are cases reported from different parts of a panchayat, then the entire panchayat can be a containment zone. If there are positive cases in just a ward, then only that ward needs to be termed as containment zone. It depends on the number of cases and the rate of spread. That’s the most practical approach to adopt,” she said.
With 2 -2.5 lakh people coming back to Kerala, there are chances for more positive cases being reported in the state. However the state is prepared, she said. “We are prepared to deal with such a scenario. Positive cases will be there and we will tackle these. We also ought to be prepared to prevent spread,” said the minister.