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A banner displaying masks for sale on a car owned by a cab driver who has been out of work due to the COVID-19 and is now selling face masks in Kochi, Kerala on July 2, 2020. Image Credit: AP

Thiruvananthapuram: The state government in Kerala said on Sunday has said that it will be mandatory to follow precautionary COVID-19 rules for one year. People will have to continue to wear masks in public, and social distancing norms will remain in place.

Kerala on Sunday saw one dead person’s COVID-19 test results come out positive and 225 fresh cases. With this the COVID-19 toll reached 25 in the state.

State Health Minister K.K. Shailaja said there were 2,228 positive patients and 3,174 people had been cured of the disease. “The number of cases includes 117 who came from abroad and 57 from within the country. 38 were local infectees, 11 defence and BSF personnel and two crew members of a ship,” said Shailaja.

At present, 180,939 people are in home isolation and corona care centres. There are 153 hot spots in the state.

Meanwhile, Devasom Minister Kadakampally Surendran said the state capital district seemed to be sitting on an active volcano. “There has been an increase, but no community spread. All have to strictly follow the Health Department directives,” said Surendran.

Thiruvananthapuram Mayor K. Sreekumar said things were getting serious and very soon there would be new strict guidelines without which things would go out of hand.

Given the fresh turn of events, all forms of protests and strikes without permission have been banned in the state capital. If permitted, there should be not more than 10 participants.

The state government is likely to take a call on Monday on the next step, especially in districts like Thiruvananthapuram and Kochi, where there has been a spike.