There has been no solid evidence of community transmission of COVID-19 in India as yet and the infection appears to be relatively stabilising considering the rate at which it is increasing, the health ministry said on Thursday.
"While the numbers of COVID-19 cases are increasing, there appears to be relatively a stable trend or even little bit reduction in the rate at which they are increasing," said Lav Agarwal, joint secretary in the Ministry of Health.
"This, however, does not establish a clear trend and in no way are we relaxed about anything at this point."
Agarwal said the ministry is hopeful of containing the spread of coronavirus by social distancing, conducting a proper contact tracing of positive cases and by ensuring that all people at home quarantine are monitored.
Adding a note of caution, Agarwal said the community transmission phase of the disease will begin if the community and the government do not work collectively and follow the set guidelines of social distancing, home quarantine and treatment.
He urged people to support the lockdown announced by the prime minister saying social distancing can be an effective intervention to break the chain of transmission and all the efforts will go into waste even if one person does not follow the policy for containment of the disease. "Continued people's support for implementation of lockdown is needed," he said.
Agarwal said 17 states have started work on earmarking hospitals for dedicated treatment of COVID-19 patients.