The Karnataka government has decided to resume offline classes for students of 9 and 10 grades, and for pre-university college students (equivalent to Classes 11 and 12) from August 23.
The decision was taken in a high-level committee meeting held on Friday by Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai. “We have decided to reopen schools in two phases. In the first phase, (offline) classes for students in grades 9, 10, and in PU will begin from August 23, subject to conditions. Students will be classified into two batches with classes being held on alternate days,” Bommai said after meeting experts, ministers, and officials in Bengaluru.
However, a decision on resuming classes in primary schools has been kept aside for the last week of August. “This is being done to observe the situation taking into account the possibility of a third wave impacting the state,” Bommai explained.
Further, taking into account the possibility of the virus spreading into the state from neighbouring Kerala and Maharashtra, all Karnataka districts bordering these states will also have a weekend curfew, the CM announced. He added that a detailed order mentioning the guidelines will be issued soon.
At the same time, the state government has also decided to extend the night curfew, observed daily across all 30 districts, by an hour. “Night curfew will now be imposed from 9 pm till 5 am daily. At present, the same used to be in place only from 10 pm,” Bommai said.
The meeting convened in the Karnataka capital was attended by the third wave expert committee — led by cardiologist Dr Devi Shetty — constituted by B S Yediyurappa, the previous CM. Top members from the state’s Covid-19 Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) including Dr C N Manjunath and Chief Secretary P Ravi Kumar were also present at the meeting among other officials and ministers.
Karnataka has been reporting an uptick in Covid-19 cases since mid-July, with new infections ranging between 1,500 and 2,000 after the effect of the second wave subsided in mid-May. Border districts and capital city Bengaluru has been fuelling the total tally and death toll ever since.
The active caseload in the state, as of Thursday (Aug 5) was 24,414, with most of them in Bengaluru Urban (8,560), Dakshina Kannada (32,213), Hassan (1,869), Udupi (1,555), and Mysuru (1,396).