Coronavirus | With over 65% of cases, all eyes on north Chennai

The region has a high population density — 55,000 people per sq. km

April 29, 2020 11:46 pm | Updated 11:46 pm IST - CHENNAI

In the clear:  Contacts of coronavirus patients return home after testing negative after a week-long stay at Tondiarpet‘s Communicable Diseases Hospital.

In the clear: Contacts of coronavirus patients return home after testing negative after a week-long stay at Tondiarpet‘s Communicable Diseases Hospital.

Over 65% of the COVID-19 case load in the city has been reported in three zones of north Chennai.

The 426 sq. km of the city is divided into 15 zones with a total population of around 70 lakh.

Chennai Corporation Commissioner G. Prakash on Wednesday said the city’s northern zones — Tondiarpet, Royapuram and Thiru Vi Ka Nagar — have registered more positive cases. “The number of positive cases in north Chennai is more because of the population density. The city has a population density of 27,000 per sq. km while north Chennai has 55,000 per sq. km. Six wards in north Chennai reported more positive cases,” he said.

“The testing rate in Chennai is also one of the highest in the country. We have collected 22,000 samples for focused testing, out of which 673 persons have tested positive for COVID-19. But 44 positive cases have unlinked history. We have formed special teams to trace the links. There is no community spread,” Mr. Prakash insisted. He said 200 samples from traders in Koyambedu had been collected and added, “Over 1,600 retail traders will be shifted to 245 playgrounds in the city.”

Stressing on the need for social distancing in commercial establishments, Mr. Prakash said shops violating norms of social distancing will be sealed for three months. The Corporation will start exploring alternatives for management of containment zones where positive cases have been reported.

“Over 1.75 lakh people in containment zones will soon get assistance from volunteers who will facilitate supply of essential commodities. All residents in containment zones will get kabasura kudineer . One lakh packets have been received. More consignments are likely to be received shortly. Frontline workers will get kabasura kudineer ,” Mr. Prakash said.

Over 95% of positive cases are asymptomatic in the city. For example, most of the 59 media persons who have tested positive are asymptomatic. The Corporation has created 22,000 quarantine spaces in various parts of the city. An additional 22,000 will be created in private schools, private lodges and colleges.

Case in Ripon Buildings

An employee at the Chennai Corporation headquarters Ripon Buildings has tested positive for COVID-19 and has been admitted to a hospital. “His condition is stable. Samples have been collected from more employees from Ripon Buildings,” an official said.

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