Covid cases continue to rise in Kerala

There appears to be no respite to the Covid-19 spread in Kerala with the state’s positivity rate standing at 15.53 on Thursday, with 7,789 new cases reported from 50,154 samples tested, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said.

Addressing the media here, Vijayan also said 7,082 people turned negative.

“There are 94,517 active cases, while 2,22,231 people have been cured. 23 deaths were reported, taking the total death toll to 1,089. But if you look at the national rate, in a population of one million, 106 deaths takes place, while in Kerala, it’s 31 (per million),” he said.

Across the state, 2,74,672 people were under observation which includes 25,671 people in hospitals. There were 644 hotspots in the state.

Vijayan said houseboat tourism is ready but all those who wish to undertake it have to register on the state government’s Jagratha portal, without which it will not be allowed.

“The maximum number of people in a houseboat, however big the boat is, will only be 10, with only two people in a bedroom. The houseboat will have to be sanitised whenever a new trip begins,” he said.

He said the Sabarimala temple will open on Friday for the monthly prayers with strict Covid protocols and only 250 would be allowed ‘darshan’ in a day.

“All pilgrims will have to come with a Covid negative certificate and a medical certificate of fitness. There will be no crowding of pilgrims,” he said

The temple opens at 5 p.m. on Friday and closes at 10 p.m. on Wednesday.