Three students and the parent of another student who attended the exams in Thiruvananthapuram have tested positive for the coronavirus.

Hundreds of people on a road outside a school in Thiruvananthapuram crowd together as two vehicles can be seen passing through
news Coronavirus Wednesday, July 22, 2020 - 15:30

A police case has been registered against nearly 300 people who had gathered outside a venue for the Kerala Engineering Architecture Medical (KEAM) entrance exam in Thiruvananthapuram on July 16.

The Medical College Police has registered the case against the people -- mostly parents of the students who attended the KEAM exam at the St Mary's School in Pattom -- confirms the Station House Officer. "It is for violating the precautions against COVID-19, and not keeping physical distance from each other," the SHO says.

Three students who attended the KEAM exam at different venues in Thiruvananthapuram and a parent who waited outside an exam venue, have reportedly contracted COVID-19.

On Wednesday, Thiruvananthapuram Collector Navjot Khosa wrote, “A 17 year old boy, resident of Poonthura and wrote KEAM exam on 16.7.2020 at St Antony’s school Valiathura is declared positive. He was tested on 20.7.2020 and is still asymptomatic. He was tested since his mother became positive on 20.7.2020.”

It was earlier reported that two students who wrote the KEAM exam in Thiruvananthapuram had tested positive for the coronavirus. These were however in different venues and not at the St Mary's where a crowd had gathered. Pictures and videos of the crowd thronging the school had done the rounds on social media, spreading panic.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan claimed on Tuesday that there has been no security lapse in conducting the exams. “As many as 88,521 students wrote the exams across Kerala. There were 38 centres in Thiruvananthapuram and these photos point out the security lapse in one of them. But the students who tested positive had written the exam in other centres. The student who wrote at the Karamana centre and tested positive had been in a specially arranged classroom and did not come in contact with other students. The other student who tested positive wrote the exam in Thycaud, and all the other students in the same hall have been traced and would be under observation. There was also a confirmed case of a parent of a student who attended the exam at Cotton Hill School. It’s being inspected who the person had come in contact with. There is no need to worry,” CM Pinarayi said on Tuesday.

However, some people have pointed out that there was no ample parking space in some of the venues and there should have been measures taken for the parents waiting outside. Many were forced to park on the main road outside the St Mary’s adding to the chaos.

Many students and teachers had wanted the exams to be postponed as the coronavirus situation had become severe in the state in recent weeks.

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