Telangana Director of Public Health G Srinivasa Rao also criticised the public for reduced mask compliance and cautioned that the second wave of COVID-19 isn’t under control yet.

Telangana Director of Public Health G Srinivasa Rao File Photo
news Coronavirus Wednesday, July 21, 2021 - 11:25

Telangana Director of Public Health G Srinivasa Rao came down heavily on politicians and the general public for ignoring COVID-19 protocol and acting in an irresponsible manner during political rallies. Noting that the second wave of COVID-19 is not completely under control yet, he directed politicians calling for public rallies and padayatras to act responsibly and ensure precautions. “At once, political activity in the state has increased. Rallies, public meetings and padayatras are happening everywhere. Political leaders and parties have the right to do so, but they also have certain responsibilities. When you call for a procession or padayatra, are your followers taking precaution?” he questioned.

Srinivasa Rao said that although the Assembly elections are nearly two years away, a fervent political atmosphere is being seen in Telangana. Opposition parties, including the BJP and YS Sharmila’s newly launched YSR Telangana Party, have announced padayatras (walkathons) to garner grassroots support ahead of the elections. Ahead of the Huzurabad bye-election, former state Health Minister Eatala Rajender, who recently switched from the TRS to the BJP after being ousted from the Cabinet recently, began a 22-day long padayatra on July 19. “But are people, party workers and political leaders following COVID-19 norms? Leaders don’t wear masks while speaking in public. This can lead to spread of the virus,” Srinivasa Rao cautioned.

Read: YS Sharmila to Revanth Reddy, parties wish to repeat 'padayatra' history in Telangana

Noting that susceptible populations— those who are still unexposed to the virus or are yet to be vaccinated— are particularly in danger from the Delta variant of the coronavirus, the Director of Public Health cautioned people to avoid public gatherings during festivals and other celebrations. “Once cases start to decline, people are forgetting their responsibilities,” he said, criticising people for reduced mask compliance and participating in large gatherings while breaking precautionary protocol. He cautioned that the pandemic isn't over, in light of festivals like Bonalu and Bakrid.

Reminding the public of the difficult situation during the peak of the second wave, he said, “Only two months back, when there were a high number of hospitalised cases, we struggled so much for beds, oxygen and medicine. People tried to blame the government. But now people are being irresponsible and going back on the same path again,” he said. “All the health, police, municipal department and other personnel are exhausted. They can’t keep doing this again and again,” he implored.

He cautioned that a surge in cases are continuing to be reported for a few areas in certain districts, and it was observed that such surges were seen in areas where large public gatherings had recently taken place. He asked people to wear masks properly at home and outside.

Also read:

Defections, early campaigns, new faces: Telangana parties prepare for 2023 polls 

CM KCR to use ‘Dalita Bandhu’ scheme as a trump card ahead of Huzurabad bye polls

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