Lockdown extension: TN CM’s decision after discussion with health experts

A day after holding a video conference with District Collectors and seeking their opinion on extension of lockdown to check the spread of coronavirus, Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami will today hold discussions with health experts, before arriving at a final decision.

Palaniswami on Friday said the virus spread has been contained in the state, excluding the densely populated Chennai which remains a challenge. District collectors were instructed not to resort to suo motu relaxations and seek permission from the chief secretary.

Addressing collectors through video conferencing, the chief minister cautioned that the virus spread was due to the returnees from other states. “The infection is found more among them. The collectors should remain cautious and subject workers and others returning to testing, and extend treatment,” he said.

The Chief Minister indicated that the COVID-19 lockdown might be extended beyond May 31.

Wrapping up a two-hour interaction with District Collectors at the Secretariat through videoconferencing, he called upon them to follow fully the conditions of the lockdown and said that no relaxation could be given to any district. “If you want to have any relaxation, please get in touch with Chief Secretary [K. Shanmugam] and get his consent before making any announcement,” he observed.

Palaniswami  the spread of the COVID-19 infection was under control in all districts, except Chennai.

If migrant workers or others come from other States, they should be subjected to tests and conditions should be created for treatment of the infected. He cautioned officials about the likelihood of spread of the virus only through those coming from other States.

Palaniswami said people need not panic since recovery rate in the state increased to 54%. The CM indicated that there was a possibility of opening more economic activities in the coming days.

Collectors can ignore online registrations of migrant workers to go home if they were willing to stay as several industrial units have opened. At least 2.47 lakh guest workers have been sent home in 170 trains so far