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Ahead of Diwali, BMC recommends face-masks, issues Covid-19 warning

Mumbai, Oct 18 (IANS) With new stronger sub-variants of Omicron detected in Maharashtra, the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Tuesday issued an advisory ahead of Diwali to prevent any spread of Covid-19, including wearing of face-masks in public areas.

The state has reported sub-variants like Omicron-Q.1 (US variant), BA.2.3.20, plus XBB, which is a recombinant of BA.2.75 and BJ.1 – all of which have a growth advantage over other Omicron BA.2.75 variants and immune evasive properties.

Given the increasing trend of Covid-19 cases from the second week of October, coupled with the upcoming Diwali season, “this is a critical period as there may be a tendency to abandon Covid-safe behaviour, especially in crowded areas or non-ventilated spaces”, the BMC said.

The BMC Executive Health Officer has stressed the need to adhere to Covid Appropriate Behaviour during Diwali, wear masks in public or crowded areas, get vaccinated, maintain good ventilation indoors, wash hands frequently, avoid contact with symptomatic patients, use kerchief/tissues while sneezing/coughing, get tested when symptoms are noticed, and take proper treatment if found positive, to break the Covid-19 chain in the interest of fellow citizens.

Till date, Mumbai has recorded 19,738 deaths due to Covid-19 – just below Pune’s 20,601 fatalities.

In terms of total infections till now, Pune has notched 15,03,152 cases followed by Mumbai with 11,51,782 cases, with a recovery rate of 98.14 per cent.

The state Covid-19 figures are: 81,28,258 infections and 1,48,374 fatalities till date – both the highest in the country – while Mumbai and Pune regions remain among the worst-affected.

–IANS

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