With perceived normalcy in the country, people have started neglecting the precautions that we need to take against COVID-19. The sheer display of carelessness on the part of people and businesses of all kinds across the country is undoubtedly the primary factor behind the sudden spike of 847 positive cases of coronavirus in a single day on Sunday. Such a high number of patients after July 31 should serve the declaration of the arrival of the second wave. The sane voices out and inside the government, Asad Umar, for instance, had already warned us about the second wave. However, neither the ordinary people nor the larger administrative setup paid any heed to such warnings.

The increase in cases is a collective failure. On the one hand, the people failed to perform their social responsibility of taking the necessary precautionary measures against the virus. On the other, the government displayed laxity in enforcing the protocols. Many businesses and private schools still insist on running their activities even if COVID cases are detected among the staff or kids. It is then no surprise that ignoring the precautions in every walk of life has led to the unprecedented transmission rates once again. The rates are worse than before considering the positivity ratio is 40 percent higher than previously reported, and fatality is 2.06 percent against the global 2.72 percent according to the National Command Operation Centre (NCOC).

The country must brace itself for the looming second wave. The government must consider the closure of high-risk areas that NCOC has already identified. We have two options now. Either the government should close these high-risk areas, or it should ensure that the people adhere to the issued instruction; a bit of both might be the best way forward. The officials can decelerate the process of transmission by acting on one of the two proposals. The state already knows the ways through which it can contain the devastations of the virus. We cannot live apathetically anymore. While the public must adopt much-needed safety measures, the officials need to implement the protocols before the situation gets out of control.