CHENNAI: As many as 86 per cent of Tamil Nadu’s Covid-19 cases have been found to be asymptomatic, and the lockdown and related curbs have helped keep the pandemic under check, chief minister K Palaniswami said on Sunday.
In a statement detailing the various efforts taken to address the Covid-19 situation since February, he also said that the state’s mortality rate was the lowest when compared to even some foreign countries, besides other Indian states.
Tamil Nadu, he said, also had the best recovery rate.
“While the pandemic has severely affected the state’s economy, various measures have been rolled out to put it back on track, and even some new investments have been attracted as a result,” he added.
Tamil Nadu has so far reported 30,152 positive cases, including 251 deaths and over 16,000 people have been cured of the virus.
“About 5.50 lakh tests have been conducted in Tamil Nadu till June 4, 2020.
Through these tests we came to know that 86 per cent of corona-affected persons had no symptoms at all,” Palaniswami said.
Soon after the outbreak of coronavirus in China in January this year, the state government started acting from February itself, he said.
Measures included checks at railway stations and airports, sealing of the borders and the government implementing the lockdown in March, he said and lauded the people for abiding by the curbs.
But for public support, the situation could have been worse, Palaniswami added.
So far, the government has allocated over Rs 4,033 crore towards various efforts regarding Covid-19, even as the health infrastructure has been strengthened with measures, including appointment of more doctors and nurses, he said.
Increasing the number of testing labs and hospitals in public and private sectors was also done.
While there was no bar on farming and related activities during this period, efforts were also taken to steer the economy back on track.
This included the setting up of a high-level panel to attract investments, especially from firms leaving certain other countries.
As a result, investors from the US, France and the UK, among others, had signed pacts recently worth Rs 15,000 crore that would bring in 47,000 job opportunities, the Chief Minister added.
Sops to MSMEs like moratorium on repayment of debts and provision of new loans were other measures.
Food security was also being ensured with the government providing free essentials for three months starting April to over two crore ration card holders while poor, destitute and migrant workers were also being provided with food through community kitchens and Amma Canteens, he said.
The government was taking all steps for people’s welfare but they should also cooperate more in its fight against the contagion, he said.
“It won’t be possible to prevent the spread of the disease with a lack of public support though the government may impose curfew and other curbs,” he said.
Personal precautions like wearing face mask, practising hand hygiene, duly following social distancing and staying indoors were important for this purpose, he added.