Planned campaign against Kerala, says state health minister, cites serosurvey data

New Delhi: Kerala Health Minister Veena George hit back at the BJP over allegations of COVID-19 mismanagement saying that it is a planned campaign by the party and that the state was in a much better position than is being portrayed.

The minister cited data from the recently conducted serosurvey by Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) that showed that the state ranked lowest in terms of seroprevalence.

“There’s a planned campaign against Kerala. All experts in different states say that we have a very good defence mechanism. Seroprevalence study by ICMR shows that 44 per cent of people have antibodies in them, shows that our preventive mechanism was very good,” Veena George said.

“More than 50 per cent of the total population is still unaffected. The type of Coronavirus which is spreading in this phase is the Delta variant, the infectability is more. So, naturally, we are trying our best,” she added.

She further said, “We’re conducting maximum tests these days. Yesterday we conducted over 1.96 lakh tests, today we did more than 1.63 lakh tests. So, we are trying to do more tests. We want to identify every single positive case: Kerala Health Minister on state reporting 22,064 COVID cases today.”

She asserted that the state government is trying to trace all positive cases “because we want to reduce the cases and also want to make sure that there is no third wave”.

“We want to bring the situation under control, so we’re doing the maximum number of tests, that’s why positive cases are more these days,” she said.

Yesterday, the union health ministry shared findings of the recent national serosurvey across 70 districts of the country, according to which the seroprevalence was found to be just 44.4 per cent in Kerala while it was 79 per in Madhya Pradesh, 76.2 per cent in Rajasthan, 75.9 per cent in Bihar, 75.3 per cent in Gujarat, 71.0 per cent in Uttar Pradesh, 69.8 per cent in Karnataka and 58 per cent in Maharashtra.

The BJP has blamed “politics of appeasement” for the rise in COVID-19 cases in Kerala and criticised the state government for the relaxations in restrictions it had given for Eid-ul-Adha.

Noting that the state’s latest daily tally of over 22,000 cases is more than half of the country, BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra said the Left government there went ahead with relaxations for the festival despite the Supreme Court expressing its displeasure over it.

Also Read: Kerala reels under rising COVID cases, Centre sends 6-member high-level team

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