COVID-19: Health officials for lockdown in 8 districts now

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Dailynewsun Desk:

Health officials on Saturday recommended immediate “strict lockdown” in eight districts since the Indian variant already started transmitting in the community level.

Chapainawabganj district administration has already enforced strict restrictions on mobility until Monday.

The other districts recommended for lockdown are- Naogaon, Rajshahi, Natore, Kushtia, Jashore, Khulna and Satkhira.

In Chapainawabganj, 7 persons, who have not travelled India recently, tested positive for the Indian variant of the coronavirus, leading researchers to believe that the variant is being transmitted in the community.

“Considering the latest situation, we recommended that the Cabinet Division enforce strict lockdown in the districts. The Directorate General of Health Services will send the recommendation to the Cabinet via the health ministry,” Abu Jamil Faisal, member of the Epidemiology and Public Health Committee of the health directorate, told Saturday night, reports the Daily Star.

Meanwhile, the chief of the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR) yesterday said the Indian variant of coronavirus has transmitted in the community as 13 new cases of the variant have been detected in several districts.

“Seven of the 13 new patients have not been to India recently. The Indian variant has certainly started transmitting among local people,” IEDCR Director Prof Tahmina Shirin told The Daily Star yesterday.

One other locally transmitted case of the Indian variant was detected earlier in Jashore and the total number of people carrying the variant is now 20, according to the Global Initiative on Sharing all Influenza Data (GISAID).

Detecting the specific variant of a virus requires genome sequencing, a complicated and expensive process that takes 3-7 days to complete.

The weekly epidemiological analysis of the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS), meanwhile, showed that compared to the previous week, the nationwide transmission of coronavirus has increased by around 22 percent in the seven days preceding yesterday.

The latest weekly analysis identified over 30 districts as high-risk zones with 10 percent or higher positivity rates, up from 25 districts in the previous week.

The situation in Dhaka, Sylhet and Cox’s Bazar is also concerning, Faisal said.