People coming from Kerala, Maha to be monitored closely for COVID-19 in Karnataka: Health Minister

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Bengaluru, Feb 19 (PTI) People coming to Karnataka from neighbouring Kerala and Maharashtra, which have seen a spike in COVID-19 cases, will be monitoredscrupulously with special attention in the border districts, state Health Minister K Sudhakar on Friday said.

He did not rule out the possibilityof a second wave of COVID-19 in the state and cautioned the people against any negligence as the pandemicwas still not over.

Noting that coronavirus cases were increasing in Kerala and Maharashtra, he said 'I have written to the Home Minister, also to the Deputy Commissioners of all the border districts and willbe having a video conference with them tomorrow.

Special attention has to be given in the districts bordering the two districts,' Sudhakar said.

Speaking to reporters in Chikkaballapura, he said, there was increasing negligenceamong people and they seemed to have developed a misconception that the COVID-19 has gone, warning of an impending 'danger', if precautionslike wearing masks and maintainingdistance are notfollowed.

'Definitely COVID has not completelygone, but fortunately the vaccination has come....all those coming from Kerala and Maharashtra will be monitoredscrupulously. Our department has already issued guidelines, those (from Kerala) cannot come without an RT-PCR negative certificate,' he added.

Karnataka earlier this week had issued new guidelines mandating all those coming to the state from Kerala to carry a negative RT-PCR test report not older than 72 hours.

The Minister also said soon a meeting will be held under the leadership of the Chief Minister with Deputy Commissioners of all districts regarding the vaccination and the alertness that has to be maintained in the days to come as there was a possibilityof a second wave.

As of Thursday, cumulatively 9,46,860 COVID-19 positivecaseshave been confirmed in Karnataka which included 12,282 deaths and 9,28,767 discharges. The active cases stood at 5,792. PTI KSU VS VS