DHARAMSALA, 1 Oct: A total of 102 exiled Tibetans in India have tested positive in the past week, the COVID- 19 Task Force of the Central Tibetan Administration(CTA) said.
“The positive cases were reported in the last seven days after testing 1,342 Tibetans from 13 Tibetan settlements in India and 2 from 4 Tibetan settlements in Nepal,” Dr Tsering Tsamchoe said during the committee’s weekly briefing.
Of the lot, 69 are males while 33 are female and the eldest among them is 82 while the youngest one who tested positive was a 1-year-old.
For the third week in a row, the committee reported zero death in the past week.
The tally now stands at 6,520 COVID-19 positive cases to date out of which 6,196 have recovered while 150 people have unfortunately succumbed with 174 active cases.
Dharamsala jurisdiction and Bylakuppee Tibetan settlement still remain the hot spot of the COVID-19 cases among the exiled Tibetan community in India while cases have started reporting sparingly in Mundgod Tibetan settlement as well.
Dr Tsamchoe further informed that a total of 655 exiled Tibetans from 10 Tibetan settlements in India and 2 from Nepal were under quarantine this week. While 254 of them are under home quarantine, another 391 are under institutional quarantine.
As the school are reopening, the committee recommended the school’s administration to form committees to monitor and attend to COVID-19 related issues.
With regards to the recent spike in cases among Tibetans in Dharamsala, Dr Tenzin Tsundue from Delek Hospital stressed the importance of wearing masks and urged the public to exercise caution by following the standard guidelines such as keeping social distancing and washing hands regularly.
He further informed that except for one, all others who tested positive were not in serious condition.
Dr Tsundue also spoke on the importance of getting vaccinated and said, “getting vaccinated will not just ensure higher immune against getting COVID-19 infection and evidently making it less likely to develop serious illness if infected.”
“Around 1,300 Tibetans have not opted to get vaccinated as per our data,” he said and concluded by urging them to get vaccinated.
The committee said that 93.21 per cent of exiled Tibetans in India are fully vaccinated. A total of 37,356 Tibetans in India have received both the dose while 13,478 Tibetans have received the first dose.
The vaccination rate of Tibetans in Nepal stands sam as last week at 45.59 per cent. A total of 3,191 Tibetans are fully vaccinated while another 533 have received their first jab.
Additionally, the committee said it has distributed 52,883 units of Sorig immune boosters to date among Tibetans and that it’s the Mental health section has counselled 40 Tibetans through phone calls in the past week.
Since its outbreak in Wuhan in late 2019, the pandemic has infected 233,744,983 people and killed 4,782,996 people globally according to data from Johns Hopkins University. Though cases have started subsiding in India, it still continues to sit second in the list of the country worst hit by the pandemic with 33,766,707 active cases and 448,339 deaths.