Bengaluru: The country’s top doctor’s organisation warned on Monday that opening India’s tourism attractions and allowing pilgrimage travel might act as COVID-19 “super spreaders” of a third wave of diseases.
After a devastating second wave destroyed the country’s health system, mostly due to the more contagious and lethal Delta form, India is currently reporting roughly a tenth of its highest daily numbers from May.
However, doctors are concerned that a third wave of infections is on the way when travel restrictions in various sections of the country are loosened.
On Monday, India’s top doctor’s association, the Indian Medical Association, urged state governments and residents to remain vigilant against COVID-19, predicting a third wave.
The IMA noted in a press release that “it is painful to notice, in this vital time… in many places of the country, both government and public are complacent and participating in huge gatherings without following COVID-19 protocols.”
The IMA’s remarks matched those of senior government officials, who have urged citizens to avoid crowding tourist attractions and warned that the second coronavirus epidemic is still ongoing.
According to Health Ministry data, India reported 37,154 new COVID-19 cases and 724 new deaths in the last 24 hours, compared to a peak of almost 400,000 infections each day in May.
The country has the third largest COVID-19 death toll in the world, with almost 408,000 deaths.
The vaccination push in India has stalled as well, with only about 8% of the 950 million adult population being fully vaccinated. On Monday, the country had immunised 3.7 million individuals.