Amid the huge spike in coronavirus cases in India, especially of the Omicron variant, Karnataka has stepped-up vigil at its borders with Maharashtra which is leading the tally, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said on Sunday.
“There has been a spike in Corona, Omicron cases in the last one week. This is especially high in Maharashtra with Mumbai in the lead. We have issued instructions for strict vigil in border districts as the region has high business interactions with Mumbai,” he told media persons at the Belagavi airport.
Only those who have been double vaccinated and have RT-PCR test reports are being allowed to enter the state, he said.
“Not only the Belagavi check post, even other check posts around have been asked to tighten measures. Border areas of neighbouring Vijayapura district too has been asked to tighten checking. 11 check posts have come up in Vijayapura. Though the tight measures would cause a bit of inconvenience, it is inevitable in the interest of public health in Belagavi district,” Bommai added.
Noting that a vaccination drive for children aged 15 to 18 years is being launched on January 3, he said that instructions have been issued to implement it systematically.
“Prime Minister Modi’s desire to bring the children within a secure bio-bubble is being realised through the vaccination drive to be launched on January 3. Vaccination would be held on January 10 for those who are over 60 years old with comorbidities,” Bommai said.
“We should be prepared to prevent the spread of corona and also face any challenging exigencies. Oxygen supply companies have been contacted to ensure adequate timely supply unlike the shortages witnessed last time. District and taluk hospitals have been instructed to get their oxygen plants ready to function. Action has been taken to keep 4,000 oxygen beds ready. Indents are being prepared to procure adequate stock of medicines.”
To a question about any possibility of extending the night curfew, Bommai said that a decision in this regard would be taken after discussing the prevailing Covid situation and spread of the pandemic in Bengaluru.
Asked whether a lockdown would be imposed if the people violate guidelines, he said that the state government is very clear about it.
“Strict measures have been taken in public interest. People should avoid creating a situation that could compel the government to impose a lockdown by following the guidelines.”