Tamil Nadu

Have sought Centre’s nod for 21 testing labs: CM

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami.   | Photo Credit: Bijoy Ghosh

‘One lakh Rapid Test Kits to arrive on April 9’

Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami on Monday said the State government had sought the Centre’s approval for establishing 21 more laboratories to test people for COVID-19. The State currently has 11 government and six private testing labs, he told journalists at the Secretariat.

Noting that the government had placed orders for one lakh Rapid Test Kits to speed up the testing rate, he said they were expected to arrive on April 9. The kits could complete tests in around 30 minutes, he said.

Soon after the Rapid Test Kits arrive in the State from China, they would be sent to the districts concerned to commence testing from April 10.

The CM pointed out that even those who had not developed any symptoms had tested positive for COVID-19. A total of 1,848 persons suspected of having been affected by the disease had been admitted to various hospitals, he said.

There were about 22,000 beds for COVID-19 patients and 3,371 ventilators in the State, which had sufficient stock of masks and other personal protective equipment. The government had placed orders for 2,500 more ventilators, the CM said.

Of the 2.10 lakh air passengers who had arrived in the State recently, 90,541 were under home quarantine. As many as 10,116 persons had completed 28 days of mandatory quarantine. Steps had been taken to provide essential supplies such as provisions, vegetables and milk to those under home quarantine, he said.

On lockdown extension

The CM declined to comment on the possibility of the lockdown and the prohibitory orders being extended beyond April 14. When asked if the lockdown would be extended, he did not give a specific reply. Instead, he said the pandemic was contagious and more cases were being reported. Underlining the seriousness of the issue, he appealed to the public to remain indoors in order to curb the spread of COVID-19.

The CM said police personnel were humans too, and the public should cooperate with them, especially during the lockdown period. When asked about the issue of some police personnel being harsh to people venturing out of their homes during the lockdown, he said, “We cannot blame the police alone.” “They are manning the roads under the hot sun, working in shifts, and have to stand for long hours,” he said, adding, “The public should think about all this. Self-discipline is needed.”

Class X exams

The revised schedule for the State Board Class X public exams would be announced later, the CM said. He said the situation was still not conducive to hold exams, and an assessment will be made and the revised dates announced only after the lockdown ends. When it was pointed out that several private schools had been sending SMSes to parents, asking them to pay the term fee for the forthcoming academic year in spite of the lockdown, he said, “If you give us specific details, action will be taken.”

Recommended for you
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Jul 11, 2020 4:37:49 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/have-sought-centres-nod-for-21-testing-labs-cm/article31274664.ece

Next Story