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Total lockdown in Kerala from Saturday till May 16 as COVID-19 cases surge
Thiruvananthapuram, May 6, 2021
The Kerala government has announced a total lockdown in the state from Saturday morning till May 16 in the wake of a sharp spike in the number of cases of COVID-19 in recent days.
"As directed by the CM, the entire State of Kerala will be under lockdown from 6am on 8 May to 16 May. This is in the background of a strong 2nd wave of #COVID19," Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan's office said on Twitter.
Kerala had reported a record 41,953 new cases of infection and as many as 58 deaths yesterday.
With these, the death toll so far, since the first COVID-19 cases in India were reported in Kerala way back in January 2020, has gone up to 5,565 while the total number of cases has increased to 1,743,932.
The total active cases in the state stood at 375,658. A total of784,193 are in quarantine, including 755,453 in home or institution quarantine, and 28,740 in hospital, the Department of Health said.
Kerala Minister for Transport A. K. Saseendran confirmed that the state had no other option but to go for total lockdown, given the surge.
"This is the only way out and it will only benefit all of us. So all have to abide by it and stay home," said Saseendran.
President of the Kerala Government Medical Officers Association, Vijayakrishnan said there is no way out other than a strict lockdown.
The IMA State wing also had wanted tough protocols, but an all-party meeting held last week however decided to wait and was against declaring a total lockdown.
"This lockdown is different from the one which we had the last year as then the number of cases was very less, but the situation now is grave as the numbers are going higher by the day. This lockdown will certainly help us bring down the new cases," said Vijayakrishnan.
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Wednesday had expressed grave concern over the spike in cases.
Since the end of last month, as a first step, the government had imposed a partial lockdown on Saturdays and Sundays. This was extended from Tuesday onwards, but now the government has decided to go in for a total lockdown.