IMA urges Kerala to withdraw order easing COVID-19 curbs ahead of Bakrid

New Delhi: The Indian Medical Association (IMA) on Sunday asked the Kerala government to withdraw its decision to ease COVID-19 restrictions ahead of Bakrid, terming it “unwarranted and inappropriate” at a time of a medical emergency.

The apex doctors’ organisation said it would knock the doors of the Supreme Court if the Kerala government does not enforce Covid-appropriate behaviour to curtail the rising menace of the viral disease by withdrawing this decision.

The IMA issued a statement here, saying while many northern states have stopped traditional and popular pilgrimage yatras in view of the pandemic, it is unfortunate that Kerala took a decision that will pave the way for mass gatherings.

“The IMA is pained to see amidst the rise of cases and seropositivity, the Kerala government has issued an order to ease out lockdown followed in the state on the pretext of religious gatherings of Bakrid. It is unwarranted and inappropriate at this time of medical emergency,” the statement read.

In the larger interest of the country and the well-being of humanity, the IMA strongly demands that the order be withdrawn and zero-tolerance towards violation of Covid norms enforced, the medical body said.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Saturday said that in view of Bakrid (Eid-ul-Azha) being celebrated on July 21 in the state, textiles, footwear shops, jewellery, fancy stores, shops selling home appliances and electronic items, all types of repairing shops and shops selling essential items shall be allowed to open on July 18, 19 and 20 from 7 am to 8 pm in category A, B and C areas.

In D category areas, these shops can function only on July 19, he said.

Areas with a Test Positivity Rate of less than five per cent are included in category A, those with five to 10 per cent are included in category B, areas with 10 to 15 per cent in category C and those above 15 per cent will be in category D.

Places of worship can be allowed with a maximum of 40 people on special occasions of celebration, the chief minister said.

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