Thiruvananthapuram: The “carelessness” of the Kerala government, which is more focused on commemorating the Moplah riots, was the cause of the state’s steep rise in COVID-19 cases and test positivity rate, said Union Minister of State for External Affairs and Parliamentary Affairs V Muraleedharan on Thursday.
On Wednesday, the southern state recorded 31,445 new coronavirus infections, bringing the total to 19,972 with 215 new deaths and raising the TPR to 19.03 percent.
After a three-month hiatus, Kerala reported more than 30,000 cases. It had last reached this level on May 20, in the midst of the second wave, when it recorded 30,491 cases.
Speaking to the media in New Delhi, the minister stated that the high number of new cases, rising test positivity rate (TPR) of close to 20%, and number of fatalities in Kerala all indicate that the state is in a very bad phase of the pandemic.
The state government’s carelessness was to blame, he said, adding that the Left government was “more focused on celebrating the anniversary of the Moplah riots.”
“That is not our top priority.” “The priority should be to deal with COVID-19,” he said.
Similarly, Congress MLA Ramesh Chennithala stated that the state government failed to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the state and demanded that Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan apologise to the people.
He also claimed that the state’s “carelessness” was to blame for the rise in COVID-19 cases in Kerala.
According to the Congress MLA, the state currently accounts for roughly 70% of the daily national total of new infections.
Muraleedharan told a press conference in New Delhi that the central team that recently visited the southern state had pointed out flaws in Kerala’s COVID prevention measures.
He claimed that the Kerala government’s home quarantine policy had failed to stop the virus’s spread, causing the hospital infrastructure to be overburdened and normal beds to run out.
He went on to say that the chief minister, who used to hold COVID press conferences in the evening on a regular basis, was no longer doing so and was “nowhere to be seen.”
He stated that the state’s previous claims of vaccine shortages were all lies, and that its vaccination measures have also been found wanting, as only 84% of its health workers have received both doses of the vaccine to date, while other states have achieved better results.
Muraleedharan asked if the state had any data on the expected increase in COVID-19 cases and TPR as a result of the relaxations granted during the recent Onam celebrations, when crowds were seen in marketplaces throughout Kerala.
He stated that the state must take strict measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Kerala.
Following the Onam celebrations, medical experts predicted that the TPR would rise above 20% and the number of infections would increase further.
Kerala has been logging more than or close to 20,000 cases almost every day since July 27, after the Bakrid celebrations, when restrictions were relaxed for a few days.