Public health expert Dr K Kolandaisamy said the numbers were likely to rise, as several closed areas like jewelleries, textile shops, automobile showrooms and other shopping areas were seeing a huge footfall during the festival season.
“The shopping centres and markets are crowded, and the shops are poorly ventilated. Many such places have become hotspots in the past because of overcrowding and poor ventilation. Social distancing norms and use of masks is not being followed properly in these places,” he said.
Doctors added that the decline in cases should not be taken as a relief, as a rise in cases was expected after the festival holidays.
“Festival offers and packages have attracted a large number of customers to shopping centres. Social distancing regulations are flouted, thermal screening of customers is not being done and masks are used to only escape police action and fine. Public may have to pay a heavy price, as more festivals, including Deepavali, Christmas and New Year are approaching,” warned Dr Srinivasan, chief of medicine at Villupuram Medical College and Hospital. The upcoming weeks were important to be monitored and control COVID-19 cases, he added.
The decline in cases should be used to ensure complete cooperation from the public because the festivities can lead to large hotspots, added experts from Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).
“Recoveries have increased and adequate facilities are available currently. But in case of sudden surge, it will be challenging situation for the public health authorities to handle,” added Dr Hariharan, chief of medicine at Government Stanley Medical College Hospital.