COVID-19: CTA reports 260 positive cases, a new weekly high

DHARAMSALA, 23 April: As many as 260 COVID-19 positive cases, a new weekly high was reported among exiled Tibetans in India and Nepal in the past week, the Covid- 19 Task Force of the Central Tibetan Administration said.

“A total of 260 Tibetans have tested positive for the COVID-19 in the last week after tests were conducted on 1,202 Tibetans from twenty settlements in India and 9 Tibetans from 2 settlements in Nepal,” Dr Tsering Tsamchoe said during the committee’s weekly briefing.

The tally now stands at 2,097  COVID-19 positive cases to date out of which 1,692 have recovered while 50 people have succumbed with 355 active cases.

the committee further said that 2 Tibetan died due to the infection of the coronavirus in the last week.

The development came as India continues to grapple with the devastating second wave of the virus, registering the highest-ever daily count recorded in the world day after day. 

Registering three lakh cases for the second straight day, India recorded 3.32 lakh new Covid cases and 2,263 deaths since yesterday.

The committee further informed that a total of 520 exiled Tibetans from 14 Tibetan settlements in India and 2 from Nepal were under quarantine this week.  Of the lot, 410 are under home quarantine while 110 are under institutional quarantine.

With the alarming surge in cases in India and the situation becoming worse than that of 2020, Palden Dhondup, the Secretary of the CTA’s Health Department urged Tibetans to do their part to contain and fight the pandemic and called for continued caution by following guidelines issued by the health authorities and by wearing masks and maintaining social distancing.

He further identified Dharamsala, Dehradun, Hunsur, Varanasi, and Orissa as the worst-hit regions with Tibetan population in India with the maximum cases and added that the health department has rendered every assistance at their disposal.

However, he added that the department is facing an acute shortage of frontline health workers and urged Tibetan medical practitioners and nurses to come forward and volunteer to serve the community.

He concluded by discouraging traveling, social gatherings, and meetings. 

With cases spiking at an alarming rate in India, Dr Tenzin Tsundue said the second wave is more contagious. As many hospitals across Indian cities reporting a chronic shortage of hospital beds and oxygen, he advised against careless behavior and complacency.

“Wear masks properly and wash hands frequently. Isolate yourself if you have any COVID-19 symptoms and get vaccinated,” he concluded.

So far, 14,634 Tibetans have been vaccinated. 

 Since its outbreak from Wuhan in late 2019, the pandemic has infected 144,757,145 people and killed 3,072,309 people globally according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

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