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September 2021
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Kerala News
Vijayan rejects oppn charges on rising COVID-19 cases; cites low CFR
 
Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Saturday reacted sharply to the Opposition Congress allegations over "mismanagement'' in handling the COVID-19 pandemic, saying the state''s Case Fatality Rate was below the national average, none had died due to lack of oxygen facility and no patient had to scramble to get a hospital bed.

Amid the rising cases and the opposition attack, Vijayan met the media after over a one month gap and alleged that certain elements were trying to malign the state and said the people had seen the reality, "which cannot be erased." He also announced that night curfew would be enforced in the state from next week from 10 PM to 6 AM to prevent the spread of pandemic.

"In areas where the weekly infection population ratio is above seven per cent, the government has decided to implement a lockdown. From next week, there will be a night curfew from 10 PM to 6 AM. Night curfew has already been issued for tomorrow," he said.

The Opposition Congress and the BJP have been attacking the Left government over the rising number of cases and demanding that the chief minister break his silence, as the daily COVID cases have crossed the 30,000 mark for the last four days.

"No one died in the state due to lack of oxygen facility or no one had to scramble for hospitals in Kerala. No one had to queue up in front of crematoriums with the body of their dear ones. People here did not face any situation to dump the dead bodies in rivers. Whatever they say, the people have seen the reality... that cannot be erased. It was because we the people fought together," Vijayan said.

He said the state government was able to maintain the case fatality rate well below the national average as the health sector in Kerala was strengthened and was not overstretched.

Vijayan debunked the charge of Opposition leader V D Satheesan that officials have "hijacked" the COVID-19 management in the state and said starting from the COVID-19 volunteers at the local level, all officials are taking part in the fight against the pandemic.

"Not only officials, but our frontline workers, the people''s representatives at the local level, volunteers and others are taking part in the fight against the pandemic. The government and the officials are not separate entities, but work together. It''s unfortunate that such statements are being made," the chief minister said.

Satheeshan had charged that the COVID-19 management in Kerala was an "utter failure" and said the state has been reporting 68 per cent of the total cases in the country.

Explaining the COVID-19 situation in the state, Vijayan said the prime objective of the government was to save the lives of the maximum number of people in this pandemic.

Vijayan also listed out various articles complimenting the Left government for its COVID-19 management in the state.

"During a pandemic, the plan is always to save maximum lives. Kerala has a high density of population, high number of people with lifestyle diseases, high number of aged population and other factors that may result in high fatality rate. But reports show the CFR here is 0.51 per cent, whereas the national average is 1.34 per cent," Vijayan said.

He also pointed out that over two crore people in Kerala have received the first dose of vaccine and expressed hope that by September, all those above 18-years will get vaccinated.

"A total of 2,77,99,126 people have received vaccines in the state, including 2,03,90,751 with the first dose and 74,08,375 with the second dose. This means 57.60 per cent of the population received the first dose and 20.93 per cent received the second dose," Vijayan said.

He also assured that the health department has made necessary arrangements to face the impending third wave.

"The number of oxygen beds, ICUs, and ventilators have been increased in hospitals from the taluk level. The pediatric wings have been strengthened in the state. 750 extra beds, including 490 with oxygen facilities, have been arranged for children in the state," he said.

He also said Rs 3,19,99,000 has been allotted for 87 children who have lost both parents due to COVID-19. Vijayan said a fixed deposit of Rs three lakh and Rs 2,000 every month would be given to the child until he/she attains the age of 18 years. Their education expenses till graduation would also be borne by the government.

Kerala reported 31,265 COVID-19 cases and 153 deaths on Saturday, taking the total caseload to 39,77,572 and the toll to 20,466. The Test Positivity rate dipped to 18.67 per cent from 19.22 on August 27.


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