ROURKELA: With the easing of restrictions, a sense of complacency has crept into residents of the Steel City since the day the second Covid wave showed signs of waning. Covid appropriate behaviour is not being followed by the majority of population despite threat of a third wave looming large. Dropping their guard, people are going about life as if the pandemic is over. Sources said at many places of Rourkela, people have stopped using masks.
Besides, as enforcement activities become lax with relaxation of curbs, roadside vendors, shopkeepers and customers are not adhering to the safety guidelines. As Sundargarh is a category ‘A’ district, government offices and courts have started working normally and educational institutions are headed for graded reopening while economic activities are being allowed till 8 pm.
Health officials said the disastrous impact of second wave has lessened visibly, but the threat is not over. Considering the rapid surge in Covid-19 cases in Sundargarh from April 9 and quick community spread, it is imperative to stay protected all the time.
The second wave has officially claimed 267 lives in Sundargarh district in just two months as compared to 173 Covid deaths during the first wave last year. During the first wave, the district had reported 17,500 positive cases and in the second, 42,700 cases were recorded in Sundargarh.
With the Test Positivity Rate of Sundargarh consistently remaining below three per cent, all the three dedicated Covid hospitals and care centres have been closed from July 1. Only 200 beds have been kept ready at JP hospital. Besides, the district is also lagging behind in vaccination as 5,44,537 of the projected 17.87 lakh adult population have received the first dose so far. Chief district medical officer Dr SK Mishra said Covid appropriate behaviour is the only way to prevent the third wave. He appealed to people to remain cautious.