Is Lockdown coming back in Tamil Nadu? Check what TN Health Minister Vijayabaskar said!

As the sequel of a sharp surge in COVID-19 cases, Tamil Nadu has been surfaced with the speculations that the lockdown is coming back again in the state to curb the pandemic. Social media went abuzz that the government will impose another set of lockdown after the assembly polls and it has been giving the prefix for that by shutting down the schools and tightening the restrictions. However, amid such speculations, Tamil Nadu Health Minister Vijayabaskar has opened up on whether the government is considering calling the lockdown back.

Vijayabaskar is contesting in the upcoming polls from the Viralimalai constituency and in the middle of the heated campaign trial, the Health Minister had given an interview to an English news agency during which he asserted that the government is not planning to implement another lockdown in the state. His assertion has come as a response to the speculations that the state won't see the return of the lockdown. 

The minister's statement has drawn more significance as the state has been witnessing an unprecedented spike of COVID-19 cases in recent times as over the last 12 days, the rate of increase in COVID-19 cases in the state has been at 135%, which alarmed the state government to initiate the measures to contain the resurgence of the human to human transmitting virus. 

According to the Tamil Nadu State Disaster Management Authority, the state had reported 695 COVID-19 cases on March 13, and on March 24, the state had reported 1,636 fresh COVID-19 cases. In 12 days, the rate of increase has been recorded at 135%. Taking to Twitter, the state government body had released a graph and appealed the people to wear facemasks, observe social distancing, and get vaccinated for the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Though Tamil Nadu is in election fervor, the rise had cautioned the state and government that the spread would be rampant unless it is effectively dealt with. Recently, Tamil Nadu Health Secretary Radhakrishnan IAS had said that there has been a sign of apathy from people as most of the people are not wearing masks in public places and they are not adhering to the guidelines and protocols. Radhakrishnan further urged the political leaders and members of the political parties to wear masks and follow the guidelines during their campaigns for the forthcoming assembly polls. 

Last week, as an effect of rising COVID-19 cases, the Tamil Nadu government has ordered to shut down the schools and physical classes for students in classes 9, 10, and 11. The government had also ordered to close the colleges and it had encouraged the schools and colleges to conduct classes online, which had seemingly brought back the new normal into force to curb the spread. 

On the other side, the government has permitted the schools to conduct physical classes for the students of class 12 as they will be appearing for their board examinations in May. The schools are directed to conduct the classes by adhering to the COVID-19 protocols. According to the state health department, Tamil Nadu has reported 8,73,219 cases so far as of Thursday including 1,779 fresh cases that were reported on Thursday. Of the total cases, 10,487 are active, 8,50,091 have been discharged, and 12,641 had succumbed to the viral infection. Last Saturday, Tamil Nadu had reported over a thousand cases for the first time in 81 days.