The 44-year-old man had travelled from Chennai with a group of nine. None of them had a pass to enter the state, say officials.

Kerala protesters who came in contact with man who got COVID-19 told to quarantine Image for representation only
news Coronavirus Thursday, May 14, 2020 - 10:42

After a Malappuram native who entered Kerala from Chennai tested positive for the novel coronavirus, Health Minister KK Shailaja teacher has ordered those who were in the vicinity of the man to go into  observation.

The 44-year-old patient is a native of Pallikal Bazaar in Malappuram and was working at a juice shop in Chennai’s Kottivakkam. 

On Friday, he along with a group of nine people started from Chennai on a minibus. All of them had reportedly travelled without an entry pass to Kerala. On Saturday morning, the group reached the Walayar check post in Palakkad, one of the six entry points via road to Kerala. Police officials at Walayar stopped the vehicle and the man along with another member of the group was admitted to the Palakkad district hospital’s isolation ward as he suffered from bouts of vomiting, headache and general discomfort. His results returned positive for the virus on Tuesday, May 12. 

On the day of the arrival of this group from Chennai to Walayar, members of the Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee had staged a protest near the check post, against government apathy meted out towards workers in traditional sectors and stranded Malayalis. The Health Minister also added that if protesters had been in the vicinity of the positive patient, they too will have to go under observation.

On Wednesday, 10 more persons tested positive for the virus in Kerala. This includes three people from Malappuram, two from Wayanad and Palakkad each and one from Kottayam, Kannur and Kozhikode districts. Among those tested positive, four persons had flown in from abroad recently and two of them had come from Chennai. 

The remaining four caught the virus after coming in contact with  an infected person. All four of them had contracted the virus from a 52-year-old truck driver who had carried goods from Chennai’s Koyambedu market to Wayanad’s Meenangadi-Kulambari godown on April 27. The Koyambedu market in Chennai is the state’s biggest cluster of COVID-19 infections.

Two of those who have tested positive are Wayanad natives who came in contact with the truck driver. The other two are police officers from Kannur and Malappuram who were stationed in Wayanad and had come in contact with the 52-year-old patient. 

Meanwhile, one patient from Kollam recovered from the virus by testing negative on Wednesday. With this, 490 persons in Kerala have successfully recovered from the virus while 41 cases are currently receiving treatment in various hospitals across the state. 

A total of 34,447 persons are under observation in the state for COVID-19, out of which 33,953  are under home quarantine while 494 have been admitted to hospitals. Kerala, which currently has 34 hotspots, has also not reported any more hotspots on Wednesday. 

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