If people followed all the COVID-19 restrictions and took all precautionary measures against the spread of the novel coronavirus, there would not be any third wave, Chief Minister M.K. Stalin said on Sunday. He also insisted on self-restraint and asked people to avoid stepping out unnecessarily.
"Doctors have been saying the third wave might be due to the violations of COVID-19 lockdown restrictions. If we follow these restrictions, no wave can come," Mr. Stalin said.
"Based on the information we have, there are ample number of beds, both oxygen and ICU, are available. This governemnt is prepared to face any wave. I know that the people of Tamil Nadu are also confident," he said. The spread of the virus that had touched over 36,000 cases a day in the past, was less than 4,000 a day, he pointed out.
Reiterating the need for people to vaccinate themselves, Mr. Stalin contended that vaccines were a shield in the fight against the pandemic. "We have not completed vaccination for all of the State's population. We have used up all the doses provided by the Union government. They have not provided us with sufficient supply," he said.
As for vaccines for children, doctors were yet to decide and research was on over the issue, he said: "We have to complete vaccination for all. We are willing to make it a people's movement," he said and underlined that the people should be aware of the insufficient supply of vaccines.
Observing that the COVID-19 pandemic has only been under control and not fully wiped out, Mr. Stalin appealed to the people of Tamil Nadu to follow all precautionary guidelines to avoid contracting the infection.
In his open appeal, the CM said that the State was recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic and its spread was under control. He thanked the people, who extended their cooperation with the government by following the lockdown restrictions and also doctors, nurses and frontline workers, who served the people with their lives.
A complete lockdown, doctors' dedication and commitment, State's medical infrastructure and an efficient State administration were the four factors towards the successful control of the pandemic in the State so far, he contended.
Explaining the reasons behind announcing relaxations from the COVID-19 lockdown, Mr. Stalin said there were three primary reasons behind the relaxations -- the livelihood of the people was affected, hardships faced in getting even essential supplies and that the State economy was taking a hit.
Schools and colleges have not been reopened and social and political meetings are not allowed and so were the cinema halls and parks because they are known for crowding of people, he explained. "There should not be any laxity over following precautionary measures. Do not think that the guidelines need not be followed since the norms have been relaxed."
His only demand for the people of Tamil Nadu was that they should impose a self-disciplined regime to take all precautionary measures recommended by the State government. "Step out only if necessary. Follow all precautionary measures, wear face masks, avoid crowding in public places, follow physical distancing while on queues, use double masking when on public transport and crowded areas, wash hands at regular intervals with soaps," he underlined.
In case of any symptoms, the people should go to hospital at once, he reiterated.