Chennai, Apr 4:
A day after a marginal dip, the COVID-19 cases in Tamil Nadu touched the three-figure mark again on Friday with 102 people, almost all returnees from Tablighi Jamat meet in Delhi, testing positive, taking the tally in the state to 411.
The fresh cases included 100 people who attended the religious congregation in Nizamuddin area of Delhi, which has become the country”s biggest hotspot for the deadly virus, the state government said while maintaining that there was no community transmission as of now.
Of the 3,684 samples sent for testing so far, 411 have tested positive for the virus while 2,789 were negative and 484 samples under process, Health Minister C Vijayabaskar said in a tweet.
Tamil Nadu has the second highest number of COVID-19 cases after Maharashtra which had 423 patients as of Thursday.
Of the total cases, as many as 364 among those who had attended the Delhi meet last month have tested positive for coronavirus, the government said as it continued the massive contact tracing and containment efforts to check the spread.
In all, samples of 1,103 people from the state who attended, had been sent for testing and all of them have been isolated.
This is the third straight day Tamil Nadu has witnessed a surge in the number of positive cases since the jamat returnees in the state were brought under the scanner after several deaths were reported in Telangana and other places.
On Wednesday, the state reported 110 positive cases and on Thursday there was a moderate drop to 75 with all but one being returnees from the Tablighi congregation.
Health Secretary Beela Rajesh on Friday told reporters here that of the 102 who tested positive, 100 were Jamat meet returnees, another man had come back from US and the source for one more person was being ascertained.
To a question on a claim that some had walked away from COVID-19 treatment facilities, she said the government was not aware of any such incident and added adequate police security has been put in place.
All positive patients were stable, none requiring even intensive care and so far there has been one death, she said.
In view of the rising number of cases, the government is vigorously implementing containment plan without waiting for a cluster of cases to emerge.
As part of the exercise, 376 samples of people with severe acute respiratory infection was analysed and out of it three tested positive who had contact and it only shows that there was no community transmission of the virus, she said.
More field personnel were being engaged in the containment exercise with rise in cases and the work includes door to door surveillance as well and lakhs of people have been covered so far, she said.
Considering the number of cases, the top official said self-isolation and social distancing must be followed effectively by people and especially vulnerable sections like those with chronic ailments and immune compromised conditions must be even more careful.
The government has considered the plea of some positive patients to take treatment in private hospitals and they may do so if they wish, she said adding only up to four were being treated in private facilities as of now in the state.
The active surveillance is on in both the containment (five kilometers around the residences of those infected) and buffer zones (an additional two to three kilometer radius transcending the containment area) to ascertain those with symptoms like fever.
While 86,342 people are under home quarantine, as many as 105 are in government quarantine facilities.