COVID19: Kashmir banking on ‘breaking the chain’

Srinagar:  Down but not out, Kashmir vows to defeat corona amid a climate of fear and paranoia

The Kashmir Monitor has traced the journey of Kashmiri COVID-19 patients, even as the virus is still in the second stage of the pandemic.

It all began on the night of March 16, when a Saudi returned woman, from old city Khanyar, tested positive for the virus. She had a history of international travel and arrived in India on March 16.

Later, her family members placed under quarantine tested negative for the virus.

However, this came as a short reprieve as March 24 came with another blow of COVID-19.

Three patients tested positive for the virus in a single day.

A biker showing his identity card to policemen patrolling the city in current lockdown – Photo KM/Umar Ganie

Of who, one resides in uptown and had returned from Saudi Arabia on the same flight which was boarded by the female from the old city.

The second person hailing from the posh locality, returned to Kashmir via Delhi, after being part of a ‘Tablighi Jamaat’ that had visited Indonesia and Malaysia.

The third patient was a 22-year-old from Bandipora, who also had a history of travel outside Jammu and Kashmir.

And then the story of COVID-19 became a familiar tale to the people as of March 25, and 26 reported six positive cases of coronavirus.

All of them have been the close contacts of patients, who tested positive in the previous days.

Locked: An empty Srinagar’s city centre as people stay indoors to contain the pandemic – Photo:KM/Umar Ganie

Health experts said the chain can be broken if Kashmiris maintain the protocol, follow the lockdown and declare travel history

A community health expert at Government Medical College, Srinagar said there are four stages of Covid-19.

“Stage-1 is imported cases where those who traveled to other countries have contracted the infection. Stage-2 is local transmission in which people coming in immediate contact of an infected person report infection. Stage-3 is called ‘community transmission’ when a person who has no travel history has contracted through domestic sources. Stage-4 is when a disease is declared an epidemic, “he explained.

He noted that the valley is currently in stage two and the chain can be broken if the precautionary measures are properly taken. “Maintaining social distancing, performing cough etiquette and practicing regular hand washing are the key,” the doctor said.

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About the Author

When the world fails to make sense, Hirra Azmat seeks solace in words. Both worlds, literary and the physical lend color to her journalism.

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