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covid updates: Tamil Nadu reports 74 new cases and two more Covid-19 deaths

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CHENNAI: Tamil Nadu reported two Covid-19 deaths and 74 new cases of Coronavirus on Saturday, 73 of which were related to the mid-March Tablighi Jamaat conference in Delhi. The State has witnessed three deaths so far.

This takes the total tally in the state to 485. This was the fourth consecutive day when the state saw a large number of cases. It reported 102 cases on Friday, 75 cases on Thursday and 110 on Wednesday.

As many as 1,500 people from the state had attended the congregation in Delhi, leading to a scramble to trace, test and isolate them. These people are spread across 15 districts in the state and over 1200 people have been traced and isolated so far.

On Saturday morning, a 51-year-old patient who was admitted in a Villupuram hospital and had attended the Delhi conference died owing to the disease while a 53-year-old woman passed away at Theni medical college in the afternoon after developing respiratory complications. She was the wife of one of the attendees of the conference.

The Chennai district tops the list with 88 cases being reported followed Dindugal with 43 cases. The largest number of cases reported on Saturday were from Ranipet.

Health Secretary Beela Rajesh while addressing the media on Saturday spoke of how the situation the world over was a ‘medical disaster’ and that the government machinery was in place to deal with it.

“Many people in observation are asymptomatic but suddenly they show symptoms. To study why this happens, we will rope in PG students from The National Institute of Epidemiology,” Tamil Nadu Health Secretary Beela Rajesh said.

She further acknowledged that the mismatch in reported numbers between various districts was not ‘miscommunication’ but rather was due to the dynamic nature of the pandemic wherein the numbers keep having to be updated. However, she said by Wednesday, there would be a comprehensive number that the State would be able to put out.

Further, Rajesh said the government has 17 testing facilities and will work towards upgrading them by next week. According to data released by the government, 4248 samples have been tested of which 407 sample results are pending.

1097 samples have been tested from those who attended the Delhi conference, of these 437 people have tested positive.

In his address on Saturday, the Chief Minister appealed to treat those who had contracted the disease with compassion.

“Coronavirus can affect anyone irrespective of their religion/caste. People should avoid giving it a religious colour. We should also avoid seeing those infected with the virus and their families with hate and instead treat them with love and compassion,” he said.

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