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Only 0.04 per cent population tested for COVID-19, don’t hurry to announce Goa as Coronavirus free: Chodankar

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Panaji: Observing that only 0.04 per cent of the population has undergone tests for COVID-19 infection, Congress party in Goa on Monday said that Pramod Sawant-led government should not hurry in announcing the state as “coronavirus free.”

Goa Pradesh Congress Committee President Girish Chodankar said that the data released  by the Government on Sunday,  April 19  reveals that  826 samples were sent for testing out of which reports of 780 patients  were received by the government till date.

“State government should not hurry to declare Goa as Coronavirus free state,” he said.

“There were 7 positive cases detected in Goa and all the seven have completely recovered from COVID-19. This data has brought out shocking information that government tested just 0.04 per cent of the total 16 lakhs population of Goa from March 22, 2020 till April 19, 2020,” he said.

Chodankar said out of 780 samples tested, seven had turned positive for Corona Virus, which turns out to be one percent of the samples tested.

“This is alarming and government needs to justify its claim of Goa before declaring Goa as COVID-19 free. Government should not make unnecessary hurry,” he added.

The Congress leader said that the government also claimed of covering 3.66 lakhs houses in hardly 24 hours covering almost 16 lakhs population of the State during the Community Survey undertaken by the government engaging 7000 government employees.

“This statistics raise strong doubts on the authenticity of the entire survey exercise. There are reports of sizeable number of houses and individuals being left out of the survey,” he added.

The Government data also reveals that  1794 persons are home quarantined, 202 are facility quarantined and around 162 are in hospital isolation at GMC which works out to  2158 persons while testing of just 780 patients is done by the government in last 28 days, he pointed out.

“The government needs to give explanation on the reasons of its failure to do testing of all 2158 patients who are quarantined under suspicion of infection of Corona Virus,” Chodankar demanded.

“The Chief Minister Dr. Pramod Sawant needs to explain his government’s plan of action with regards to medical care to be provided to the 30,000 persons who are identified with flu- like symptoms and suffering from ILI (Influenza like Illness) and SARI (Severe Acute Respiratory Infection) during the Community Survey.

We want to draw CM’s attention to MHA Govt of India, report revealed that 15 lakh international passengers arrived in India between 18th January to 23rd March 2020. The central government had shared the details of travellers to respective states with directives to have screening, strict surveillance and quarantine. As per the MHA estimate at least 20,000 passengers might have arrived in Goa by direct flights from Middle East alone, keep aside passengers coming from other countries to Goa via Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai, Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi airports. CM has to verify first if this protocol was followed before arriving any decisions.

CM should remember national study in India shows 2/3rd of all Covid-19 cases comprising of people who did not show any symptoms at the time of testing while in Maharashtra it is 3/4th. There is silent spread of Covid19 through asymptometic people which is new challenge.

As main opposition party it is our duty to bring this facts to the notice of the Government. Testing is the only effective way to determine whether Goa is really in safe zone from Covid19 pandemic. We urge the government to take steps to expedite community testing and build up facilities to quarantine likely suspects who may emerge from community testing. Utmost precautions needs to be taken to screen people arriving from our adjoining States of Karnataka and Maharashtra, where the virus situation is grim.

“We would also like to remind Government to prepare itself for post lockdown situation as suggested by Rahul Gandhi by taking  into consideration a comprehensive testing of the population and phased restarting of businesses and normal life in the State,” he said.

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