Corona Crisis: Is Tamil Nadu following Maharashtra?

Total COVID-19 cases in Tamil Nadu has crossed 23000 mark and in last two days the state has registered over 1000 cases a day. Along with this, the death toll in state has crossed 180 mark. Currently there are 10,138 active cases in the state with over 13000 patients having already recovered.

On Monday, 1st of June, government run buses resumed operations in most parts of Tamil Nadu. Intra-state passenger train services were back on track in Tamil Nadu, cab services also resumed their activities in the state. It must be noted that even after over 60 days of lockdown there has been no respite in the numbers of cases in the state. Under such situation resuming the state transport services may turn the situation from bad to worse.

Majority of cases in the state are from Chennai and three districts of Kanchipuram, Tiruvallur and Chengalpattu. These districts along with Chennai have contributed to over 18000 cases till date. However, the state has carried out over 5 lakhs tests which is the highest number of tests carried out by any state government in the country. Next to Tamil Nadu is Maharashtra which has carried out over 4.7 lakhs till date. However, the number of positive cases in Maharashtra is more than 3 times that of Tamil Nadu.

The increase in number of positive cases in Tamil Nadu can be attributed to the increase in number of testing. Along with this, the mortality rate in the state is quite low as compared to Maharashtra where the death toll has already crossed 2300 mark. However, one must not ignore the fact that in Tamil Nadu out of 187 deaths till date, maximum was registered in the month of May. As per the government data released, in month of May 147 people succumbed to COVID-19 in the state and the number of positive cases which was mere 2536 on May 1st reached a height of over 22000 by May 31st.

Tamil Nadu is the second worst affected state after Maharashtra by Coronavirus. The state government has already extended the lockdown to 30th June, however, in order to revive the economy of the state, most of the services have now resumed. Though Tamil Nadu has carried out most testing in nation, in last few days the daily number of cases are rising exponentially. The resumption of certain services in the state may give rise to the spread of virus in the state. DMK president MK Stalin urged the state government to curb the spread of virus by the end of June. He accused the state government of not taking preventive steps in the month of March when the first case was reported.

Tamil Nadu which overtook Gujarat recently as second most affected state due to COVID-19 may have carried out maximum number of tests as compared to other states in country, however, the certain rise in number of cases as well as relaxation in lockdown may deteriorate the condition of the state. If proper steps not taken, Tamil Nadu may become 2nd Maharashtra of the nation.

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