Kerala warns of Covid-19 surge after local body polls

Kerala govt warns of surge in Covid-19 cases following recent local body polls

Kerala health minister K K Shailaja advised the public to self-quarantine and remain patient until a vaccine is made available

Officials count votes during counting day of Kerala local body elections, in Kozhikode. Credit: PTI.

Kerala Health Minister K K Shailaja on Saturday warned of a spike in Covid-19 cases, days after the local body elections in the state, and asked people to be 'extremely careful' for the next few weeks.

The Health Minister also advised the public to self-quarantine and remain patient until a vaccine is made available.

"It's not time yet to go shopping with kids or to entertain huge gatherings for weddings and festivities. We need to remain patient until a vaccine is available. So until then, the political parties, families and individuals should ensure that such gatherings are avoided and the health protocol is adhered to," Shailaja said during a Facebook live event.

Citing expert opinion that Covid-19 cases may increase after the elections, she asked people to get themselves tested in case of any symptoms.

"Experts opine that an increase in cases can be seen after the elections. We need to be extremely careful for the next two weeks. People should not think that elections are over and the Covid-19 has gone. Even though the government has lifted the restrictions, people should restrain themselves and follow the Covid-19 health protocol," she said.

The three-phase polling was held in a total of 21,893 wards in 1,200 local self governing bodies--including six corporations, 941 village panchayats, 14 district panchayats and 87 municipalities on December 8, 10 and 14.

The entire election procedure was in compliance with Covid-19 protocols, masks, sanitising and social distancing norms were made mandatory at all polling stations.