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Dharavi Re-emerges as Mumbai Covid Hotspot With Seven-Fold Spike in Cases, BMC on Alert

Healthcare workers wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) test a resident at a camp set up outside a temple in Dharavi, one of Asia's largest slums, Mumbai, on June 7, 2020. (REUTERS/Francis Mascarenhas)

Healthcare workers wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) test a resident at a camp set up outside a temple in Dharavi, one of Asia's largest slums, Mumbai, on June 7, 2020. (REUTERS/Francis Mascarenhas)

In Dharavi, on 28 February, 11 new cases were recorded, another 11 were seen on 1 March, 8 on 2 March and 14 new cases were registered on 3 March.

Asia’s largest slum, Dharavi has reported a sevenfold increase in Covid-19 positive cases to 73 as of 4 March from just 10 cases on 22 January, 2021.

According to a report by The Print, the BMC has taken stringent measures to prevent the situation from escalating, as it had done in mid-2020 when the pandemic was at its worst.

Also read: Coronavirus live updates

Quoting BMC’s assistant municipal commissioner, the report says, “We have gone back to our old model that helped us contain the spread last year. We have aggressively started screening people from the slum and conducting tests. We are testing almost 15-20 people for every positive case that we find.”

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In Dharavi, on 28 February, 11 new cases were recorded, another 11 were seen on 1 March, 8 on 2 March and 14 new cases were registered on 3 March.

Also, the number of people under institutional quarantine in Dharavi has increased to 94, from just three in the first week of February.

After a brief slump in Covid-19 figures, Maharashtra on Wednesday reported a record surge of infections – 10,000 cases – a number last reached months ago.

Maharashtra is among the few states contributing to the nation’s major Covid-19 load. Last month, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray had alleviated fears of another state-wide lockdown but issued a stern warning to citizens to follow all precautions like wearing masks and social distancing.

The Centre has also rushed a team to Maharashtra to assist local authorities in managing the situation. The Central teams are also trying to get to the cause of the surge and according to initial observation, large gatherings and drop in overall testing could be behind the rising number of cases.

The three-member teams, headed by joint secretary-level officers in the health ministry, have been rushed to Maharashtra, Kerala, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Punjab, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, and Jammu and Kashmir.

first published:March 05, 2021, 11:25 IST