The Karnataka Chief Minister had called for a high-level meeting to discuss the surge in the number of COVID-19 cases in the state.

Passengers travelling from flightRepresentative Image/ Picxy
news Coronavirus Tuesday, March 16, 2021 - 08:24

With a surge in the number of cases of COVID-19 in Karnataka since the beginning of March, the state government is likely to step up its checks for a negative RT-PCR test report for travellers entering the state from neighbouring Maharashtra and Kerala. Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa had called for a high-level meeting where other ministers as well as top officials were present to discuss the surge of COVID-19 in Karnataka. Addressing the media, Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa said, “We have decided to enhance checks for RT-PCR negative test reports at Maharashtra and Kerala borders. All Deputy Commissioners have been instructed to enforce the same from Tuesday.”

The state had already made it mandatory for travellers to produce test results last month, and it has now decided to make the checks at the border more stringent.

According to data shared by the Department of Health and Family Welfare Services, Karnataka reported 9,021 new cases since March began, of which 5,802 cases were from Bengaluru alone. Bengaluru also saw 40 out of the total 59 fatalities linked to pandemic in the state in the past fortnight. With 932 new cases registered on Sunday, the state's COVID-19 tally shot up to 9.66 lakh, including 8,860 active cases, while recoveries rose to 9.39 lakh, with 429 patients discharged during the day.

"The only relief is COVID-19 fatality rate is less than 1% in the state with 7 deaths reported on Monday, including 5 in Bengaluru, taking the state's death toll to 12,397 and the city's toll to 4,524," the Chief Minister said.

Data shows seven of the state's 31 districts, including Bengaluru Urban, Bengaluru Rural, Bidar, Dakshina Kannada, Kalaburagi, Tumakuru and Udupi have been reporting a high positivity rate, which was 1.49% as on Sunday.

"We have decided to scale the vaccination drive across the state and increase testing, tracing, tracking and treating the patients to reduce the caseload to avoid re-enforcing lockdowns or curfews," Yediyurappa said.

The state government will decide on more containment measures after Prime Minister Narendra Modi's video conference with Chief Ministers on March 17 to review the situation across the country.

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