Stating that Kerala was able to control new Covid cases until now, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan ruled out a community spread in the state. However, he said that new cases have increased in the state with the coming of people from abroad and other states.
Though able to flatten the covid curve, the state has seen a surge in the cases in the last days. The state reported 12 new cases on Tuesday and the total cases stood at 142, he said. With respect to containing the spread of the virus, Vijayan said “we have to vigorously continue the Break the Chain methods, quarantine and reverse quarantine. So far only four cases have been detected through sentinel surveillance. That means till now there is not community spread in the State but there is no place for complacency.”
Of the 12 new cases, five were reported in Kannur district, three in Malappuram, and one each in Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, Thrissur and Palakkad districts. Four of them came from abroad (UAE-1, Saudi Arabia-1, Kuwait-1 and Maldives-1) and eight returned from other States (Maharashtra-6, Gujarat-1 & Tamil Nadu-1).
The total number of confirmed cases in Kerala is 642 and 142patients are now under treatment in different hospitals in the State. About 72,000 persons are under surveillance across the State (71,545 quarantined at their homes and 455 under isolation in hospitals).
Till now, 46,958 samples have been sent for testing and the available results of 45,527 samples are negative. 1,297 samples were collected today. As part of sentinel surveillance of high-risk group, 5,630 samples were collected and 5,340 samples have come out negative.
Three places in Kannur district and one place in Kottayam district were declared as hotspots today. There are now 33 hotspots in the State.
Vijayan said that a daily special non-AC Chair car train will run from Bengaluru to Kerala. The service will commence on May 21 from Bangalore, he told reporters. Apart from this, a special non-AC train from Delhi to Kerala will leave New Delhi on May 20 with 1,304 passengers. The list includes 971 people from Delhi and 333 from UP, Jammu & Kashmir, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand.
“Those who have expressed their desire to come back to Kerala and registered with Norka have been prioritised by the Government. Pregnant women, the sick and children should come back first. But we have observed that those who don’t have a need to come back urgently are taking advantage of the system thus denying the opportunities for those who genuinely need to come back. I request everyone not to rush and to cooperate with the government. We are making necessary arrangements for everyone to come back. There might be some delay but everyone will be brought back,” the Chief Minister said.
ENTRANCE EXAM CENTRES
Vijayan also told reporters that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was requested to allot entrance examination centres in the UAE and other Gulf countries where a large number of expatriate Indian students live. “There has been concern among the expatriate students in the Gulf about writing the various entrance examinations including NEET. This year’s NEET examination is scheduled for July 26 and because of the travel ban, these students may not be able to come to write these exams. As such we have asked for entrance examination centres in the Gulf countries,” he said.