Chief Minister of Delhi Arvind Kejriwal said here on Friday that there was no need to panic over the rising cases of COVID-19 in the National Capital as his government is fully prepared to deal with any eventuality.
Addressing the media here, Arvind Kejriwal said that the Delhi government is closely monitoring the situation arising from new COVID cases. However, wearing of face masks has not been made mandatory as yet.
Delhi has seen a rise in COVID-19 cases in the last 15 days, but the chief minister said there was no need to panic.
A total of 42 cases of COVID-19 were reported on March 15. The figure went up to 295 cases on March 30. Kejriwal said there were 932 active cases in the city.
“We tried to understand the sudden jump in the daily Covid cases. There are a total of 932 active cases till now, and a total of 2363 Covid tests were conducted on March 30,” the chief minister said.
“There is no need to worry right now as we are taking the necessary steps on time. Till now, three deaths have been confirmed, two on Wednesday and one before that,” the CM said adding that these deaths could probably be due to co-morbidities and COVID-19 is incidental.
Kejriwal pointed out that on Thursday, Delhi Health Minister Saurabh Bharadwaj had held a meeting with health officials and today he also met with them.
“The Centre, two weeks ago, had identified six states where Covid cases were on the rise. These states were Kerala, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Telangana. Delhi was not among the states,” Kejriwal said.
The chief minister said his government is conducting genome sequencing of all COVID-19-positive cases to timely identify new variants.
“Right now, the most predominant variant that is found is XBB1.16, in 48 per cent of cases this variant is found and in almost all other cases the sub-variant of this variant is found. This variant has three qualities: it spreads very fast but it is not severe,” he said.
He cautioned that even if a person is vaccinated, it manages to infect him. 7,896 beds have been reserved for Covid-19 patients including oxygen, ICU and ventilator beds. Of these 7,986 beds, only 66 beds have been occupied so far, he added.
The chief minister also said that the Delhi government is testing sewage samples to ascertain in advance if Covid was spreading fast.
“For conducting RTPCR tests we have enough capacity, we have the capacity to conduct 4000 tests in government labs and in private labs, we have the capacity to conduct more than 1 lakh tests per day,” he informed further.
Talking about the vaccination, the CM said, “Vaccine performance is also very good, better than the initial average, almost everyone in the 18-plus category is vaccinated and people below 18 are vaccinated with the first dose and for the second dose 85 per cent people are vaccinated.”
“We have a sufficient ambulance and sufficient oxygen, sufficient storage capacity. We conducted mock drill in Delhi government hospitals,” the CM said, adding that the Centre had issued directions for mock drills in hospitals in the National Capital on April 10-11.
The Delhi government will run a campaign to inform people to be cautious and take precautions against Covid-19, he informed. 2 per cent of people are randomly tested at airports in the National Capital and instructions were given to the government hospital in the city to keep the isolation ward for COVID-19 patients.
Kejriwal said people suffering from respiratory diseases should wear masks to stay safe. He urged people to follow all COVID-19 protocols, including social distancing and hand hygiene, to stay safe.
“So, people in Delhi do not need to worry, the government is keeping a sharp eye and the government is ready to face any situation,” Kejriwal said.