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Telangana Foundation Day: The State does well to control Covid-19 pandemic

The IT diaspora bodies launched a Covid Dawakhana in rural Telangana (Pic: IANS)

Celebrating its seventh Foundation Day, at present the 28th State of Indian Union has in comparison to other States acquitted well facing the two waves of Covid-19 pandemic.

Despite being formed in 2014, the State has done well facing adverse circumstances of the Coronavirus rampage. According telanganatoday.com, the State emerged as one of the top Indian States to have handled the infections effectively.

The Economic Survey of 2020-21, praised Telangana for ramping-up the testing facilities for Covid-19 at an appropriate time. This helped not just in proper management of positive cases but also reducing the Covid deaths. According to the Government of India’s document, Telangana was amongst the three states to have saved the most lives in the country.

It of course, does not take away the fact that in the initial period of the Coronavirus, like other States, Telangana too struggled as it kept looking for appropriate strategies to tackle the disease. With the passage` of

Like any other State, initial months of the pandemic were a struggle, as authorities looked for appropriate strategies to contain Covid. However, as months went by, new infections rose in other States but started to decrease in Telangana.

This decrease in the cases as well as fatalities was due to the fact that the State’s health authorities had launched Covid rapid tests at 1,070 testing centres in Telangana, thereby allowing its quick identification and treatment of patients.

In order not to overburden the healthcare facilities, the positive cases needing institutional care were moved to hospitals. The remaining patients were kept under home-based treatment and their condition regularly monitored via telemedicine by employing Home Isolation and Monitoring (HITAM) app.

It was this vital step of early diagnosis, quick hospitalisation and home-based care that ensured that there was no major surge in demand for hospital beds and needy patients got access to beds.

While the rapid tests were used to identify and contain the infection in the community, it was the RTPCR that was largely used in the hospitals. This method greatly helped Telangana to contain the disease and deaths, according to senior officials of the State.

What made the Government's efforts pay dividends is the far greater willingness on the part of the general public to use masks, and maintain physical distancing and hand hygiene.

It is not just last year but also in this second wave of Coronavirus too, that some Telangana villages have remained unaffected by the infection.

One instance is that of a small village Dammayyapeta which is located in Kodimyal block of the Jagitial district. Surrounded by hillocks, the total number of houses in this village are 293 and the population stands at 1,144, and what is remarkable is that they have not reported a single Covid-19 case so far.

Tucked away a little deeper from the main road and surrounded by hillocks, this village, with 293 houses and a total population of 1,144, has not reported even a single case of Covid-19.

Dammayyapeta village (Pic: Courtesy/Twitter@htTweets)

Giving details of how they achieved this to Hindustan Times, the village sarpanch Tuniki Narsaiah said: “Most of the youth in the village are educated and have been reading about the Covid-19 in the newspapers and watching it on the television. But we have been following the suggestions given by the health department officials to keep the virus at bay.”

Following the Coronavirus protocol strictly since the first wave swept the country, the village managed to keep the pandemic at bay. “We held a meeting of the gram panchayat and adopted a resolution on how to follow the rules and avoid spreading of Covid-19. It has yielded good results; touchwood, we haven’t witnessed even a single case of the infection in our village till now,” Narsaih told the media.

What made it easier for the villagers to maintain social distancing was the fact that there is at least a 10 metres gap between any two houses. “This has made things easy for people to maintain adequate social distance. We made wearing of masks compulsory for all the villagers,” averred the Sarpanch.

In the last one year there have been no public gatherings and community celebrations in the village. Stating that it was a collective decision, K. Sudhakar, said, “The weddings are confined only to the families of the grooms and the brides. Unlike in the past, no relatives or friends are allowed and no marriage feasts.”

The entire village was sanitised with sodium hypochlorite solution once in three days by the gram panchayat officials. Both entry and exit from the village was strictly monitored. “We are not permitting any outsider to enter the village unless there are valid reasons and only if the person has no Covid-19 symptoms. Villagers are following all the Covid-19 protocols when they go out and return to the village. Even those running provision stores in the village go out of the village to fetch commodities only once or twice a month,” revealed Narsaih.

While a majority of the people are farmers, nearly 250 work Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Programme while wearing masks and keeping strict physical distancing.

Likewise, the tribal village Jagannathpur of Raikal block of the same district too has remained free of Covid-19. It is populated by Gond tribes and has a population of 1,000 people.