The Indian Medical Association (IMA) stated that it was displeased with the Kerala government's decision to ease current lockdown restrictions for three days to commemorate Bakri Eid, while the pandemic situation in the state has been worsening. It further noted that it would seek the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court if the state does not impose COVID-19 appropriate behavior and take back its decision.
In a press release, the medical body has called for immediate withdrawal of the order and the enforcement of a no-tolerance policy towards COVID inappropriate behavior. It also prodded the government not to get derailed from its duty as a state and from its vision to secure the safety of the state and the country, reported Hindustan Times.
Situation Of Kerala
Earlier, the state government declared relaxation in lockdown restrictions from July 18-20 (both days inclusive) due to Bakri Eid, which will be celebrated on either July 20 or 21.
Being one of the worst-hit states in the country so far, Kerala has recorded more than 3.14 million coronavirus cases and 15,269 deaths due to the infection. It recorded its highest single-day spike in a month at 16,148 new infections on Saturday.
Request Of Union Minister
Just one day ago, Union Minister V Muraleedharan urged the Kerala government to handle the pandemic with more efficacy and enforce a lockdown based on science rather than impromptu decisions.
"My suggestion is to follow the scientific approach and follow the guidelines of Government of India, ICMR guidelines and WHO. Do not utilise the pandemic as means of having political benefit out of it," the minister stated on Saturday.
Reference To Kanwar Yatra
In its press release, the medical body has also mentioned that several states in North India like Jammu and Kashmir, Uttar Pradesh, and Uttarakhand have stopped famous pilgrimages due to the pandemic. Therefore, it is unfortunate that Kerala has decided to loosen its curbs, inducing large public gatherings. It cited the example of the recently cancelled Kanwar Yatra, which has been a popular pilgrimage across Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh.
Earlier on Friday, the Supreme Court had asked the UP government to reconsider its decision and permit only a symbolic observance of the Yatra this year. Following this, the Kanwar Sangh (in consultation with the UP government) called off the Yatra on Saturday.
Lessons From Maha Kumbh
Time and again, the Supreme Court has cited the example of the Maha Kumbh in Haridwar, which contributed heavily to the massive increase in Coronavirus cases during the second wave. As reported by The Times of India, Uttarakhand recorded 1.3 lakh new COVID-19 cases in that period (between April 1 and May 7). In the same period, the state witnessed 1,713 deaths due to COVID-19.
Also read: Fake Addresses, False Phone Numbers: How An Agency Forged COVID Reports During Kumbh Mela