At least eight residents of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) in Chennai tested positive for Covid-19 on Wednesday, taking the number of infected on the campus to 191. Meanwhile. six students also tested positive at Anna University’s College of Engineering, Guindy campus. The institution decided to conduct tests after two students residing on the campus complained of fever.
Speaking to the reporters after inspecting the IIT campus, Tamil Nadu Health Secretary Dr. J Radhakrishnan, said: “We have been telling this, again and again, not wearing masks could increase the risk of getting infected by the virus. While eating we need to remove masks and hence we should make sure we maintain social distancing. Few small mistakes will cause great danger. As I said yesterday, we will initiate action the management which lacks to implement these things.”
The health secretary further asked the students not to panic. “Packed food is being supplied to the students inside the hostels. We interacted with the students today, we need to provide them confidence. Also, we have ordered to conduct testing people who work at the construction sites, we are going to initiate bus stand campaign, the bus conductors and drivers are not following safety measures. People need to avoid gathering in large numbers in marriage halls, funerals. The vaccine will definitely come, and we will curb the disease in a phased manner,” he said.
Radhakrishnan was accompanied by Adyar Zonal officer Thiru Murugan, Chief Health Officer Dr. Jagatheesan and other Corporation officials. The cluster of cases in IIT-Madras has prompted the government to instruct officials to monitor other colleges and universities across the state.
S Iniyan, Dean, College of Engineering, Guindy campus said all the six students who tested positive are asymptomatic. “500 samples were taken yesterday and 200 more samples will be taken today. The students who tested positive for Covid-19 showed no symptoms. We are hoping that they will recover soon. There is no compulsion for students (for physical presence in the classroom) at all. If they wish to attend classes online, they can do that. We are not taking any attendance. We are following all the safety precautions issued by the government,” he said.
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