Karnataka may see 7 times more covid cases among children in 3rd wave; can be averted through precautions: Experts

News Network
September 6, 2021

Bengaluru, Sept 6: If the third wave of covid-19 strikes the country, seven times more children may be affected compared to the second wave, according to the scientists.

The scientists estimated that a third wave could be averted if the rate of vaccination is doubled along with strict compliance to the behavioural norms such as mobility restriction, masking and physical distancing mandates, and crowd control measures.

Under certain special circumstances, the daily confirmed cases of children (age 0-11 and 12-17 years) at peak could be on an average seven times more than the corresponding daily confirmed cases at the peak of the second wave, they reported in a new study, noting that such findings could help shape public health strategies in the coming months.

For instance, the state can set up registries to track the kids who may develop MISC (multi-system inflammatory syndrome in children) due to Covid-19 or make arrangements for adequate paediatric ICU beds.

"The study is not to scare but to prepare. Even if they develop Covid-19 infection, most of the kids would not require a hospital stay. The seven times more estimate is on average, and it could range between three and ten,” Giridhara Babu, an epidemiologist at the Indian Institute of Public Health and one of the co-authors said.

Researchers from the Indian Institute of Science and IIPH conducted the modelling exercise following an ensemble-forecast approach using 972 models and Karnataka specific data to find that a new wave would be inevitable if compliance to the Covid-appropriate behaviour was partial.

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News Network
September 3,2021

Bengaluru, Sept 3: The government of Karnataka has decided to hold a low-key Mysuru Dasara celebrations with a ban on street celebrations in view of Covid situation.

"How the Mysuru Dasara celebrations were held last year, this year too, it should be celebrated as such. This has been announced by the chief minister in the meeting," Mysuru district-incharge minister ST Somashekhar told reporters here on Friday.

On October 7, Dasara celebrations will be inaugurated at Chamundi Hills and chief minister Basavaraj Bommai has been given the power to decide on who should inaugurate the event, he said.

"At an appropriate time, the chief minister announced the guest who would inaugurate the celebration at Chamundi Hills. The inauguration event will be conducted between 8.15 am to 8.45 am," Somashekhar said.

Public entry has been banned, he said. Every year, Dasara attracts a huge number of tourists from all over the world to the heritage city.

He said the jumbo ride will be conducted on Mysuru Palace premises, between 2.45 pm to 3.15 pm, he said.

Somashekhar said the state government has paid the 2019 Dasara festival's Rs 8.09-crore arrears.

For this year's Dasara to be held in Mysuru, Srirangapatna and Chamrajnagar, the government has sanctioned Rs 6 crore, he said.

Mysuru Dasara is a grand 10-day spectacle that culminates on the day of Vijayadashami.

Scientists and other experts have predicted a possibility of a third wave hitting Karnataka in the last week of September or October and as such they are against mass gatherings that have potential to be super-spreaders.

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News Network
September 15,2021

JavedAkhtar.jpg

Days after his Taliban-RSS remark sparked a row, screenwriter and lyricist Javed Akhtar said that ‘Hindus are the most tolerant majority in the world’ in Shiv-Sena mouthpiece ‘Saamna’.

In his earlier statement, Akhtar had said that Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), Bajrang Dal and the Rashtriya Swayam Sevak Sangh (RSS) were similar to the Taliban in their form of extremism.

Clarifying his remarks, Akhtor wrote, “Actually, in the recent interview, I have said ‘Hindus are the most decent and tolerant majority’ in the world. I have repeated this time and again and also emphasised that India can never become like Afghanistan because Indians by nature are not extremists. It is in their DNA to be moderate, to keep to the middle of the road.”

Further, Akhtar went on to explain what according to him was similar between the Taliban and Hindu right-wing. 

“As a matter of fact, there are a lot of similarities. While the Taliban is forming an Islamic government based on religion, the Hindu right-wing wants a Hindu Rashtra. The Taliban wants to curb women’s rights and put them on the margin, the Hindutva right-wing has also made it clear that they don’t like the freedom of women and girls,” he said.

Akhtar was earlier criticised by the Shiv-Sena for his controversial comment. An editorial in Saamna said that even though Akhtar was secular and spoke against fundamentalism in general, he was completely wrong in comparing the RSS with the Taliban.

In his piece, Akhtar praised Uddhav Thackeray and said that even Thackeray's worst critics could not accuse the chief minister of discrimination and injustice -- so it was beyond his understanding why the Thackeray government might be referred to as ‘Talibani’.

“My detractors have said that while I am criticizing the Hindu right-wing I have never stood against fanatics among the Muslim fold. They have accused me of not saying anything about triple talaq, of not speaking on purdah or any other regressive practice within the Muslim community. I am not surprised at the fact that they are totally unaware of my activities over the years,” he also said.

“Over the past two decades, I have been given police protection twice because of the threats to my life from fanatical Muslims: first, because not only had I vociferously opposed triple talaq when the issue was not on the national radar, but I had, along with an organisation named Muslims for Secular Democracy (MSD), toured several cities across India like Hyderabad, Allahabad, Kanpur and Aligarh and from a variety of public platforms spoken out against this retrograde practice,” he said.

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News Network
September 3,2021

Managluru, Sept 3: Amid continued covid-19 crisis in Kerala, it has been observed that students and employees arriving from there with negative RT-PCR reports are testing Covid-19 positive during a repeat test in Karnataka and a number of such cases are being reported in Dakshina Kannada and Udupi.

In this regard, students and employees coming from Kerala shall compulsorily bring negative RT-PCR certificates that are not older than 72 hours, irrespective of their Covid vaccination status (one or two doses), and the validity of such certificates is for seven days, said Additional Chief Secretary (Health) Jawaid Akhtar in a circular issued here on Wednesday.

The necessary arrangements for institutional quarantine of students from Kerala have to be done by the administrators/principals of the educational institutions. In the case of employees, necessary arrangements for institutional quarantine are to be made by the respective offices/companies/firms, the order further said. Under no circumstances will such persons be permitted to be in home isolation.

The persons shall compulsorily be in institutional quarantine and under strict supervision for seven days. On the seventh day they shall be tested by RT-PCR and on testing negative they shall be released. They shall further do self-assessment and in case of onset of symptoms, they shall get RT-PCR test done, seek medical consultation and follow the state protocol.

The person who tests positive shall compulsorily be shifted to a CCC and the contacts tested by RT-PCR, and if negative, placed under institutional quarantine for seven days, and on testing RT-PCR negative on the seventh day, he/she shall be released.

ln cases of breakthrough infection (occurring 14 days after the second vaccine dose) and samples with Ct value higher than 25, the person shall be compulsorily sent for whole genomic sequencing and pending results, the samples may be subjected to reflex/variant PCR testing (after the test kits are validated) to know the variant quickly.

Visitors from Kerala other than students and employees should produce the RT- PCR negative test report and should be in home quarantine for seven days.

Other permitted exemptions for institutional quarantine are constitutional functionaries, health care professionals and their spouses, children below two years, those in dire emergency situations (death in the family, medical treatment etc.), short term travellers (leaving within three days), students arriving in Karnataka for writing exams along with one parent (leaving within three days), and passengers in transit from and to Kerala via any mode of transport.

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