The court said that the state government needed to test more, to get a true picture of how much the virus has spread in Telangana.

Why is Telangana testing less for COVID-19 HC asks state govtImage for representation: Picxy
Coronavirus Coronavirus Saturday, May 09, 2020 - 08:39

The Telangana High Court on Friday pulled up the state government for its decision to conduct fewer COVID-19 tests and sought to know what its strategy was to curb the spread of coronavirus.

Pointing out that the state government needed to test more to get a true picture of how much the virus has spread in the state, a bench comprising Chief Justice Raghavendra Singh Chauhan and Justice B Vijaysen Reddy asked it to explain its logic.

The court noted that health experts everywhere were asking governments to ramp up testing. At such a crucial juncture, it sought to know why Telangana decided to decrease the number of tests being conducted each day.

The court was hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by Professor PL Vishweshwar Rao from the Telangana Jana Samithi (TJS).

Telangana Advocate General BS Prasad told the court that the state government was following guidelines issued by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).

Asking the state government to file a detailed report on the questions raised by it, including a list of containment zones in Hyderabad, the court posted the case for further hearing on May 14.

Meanwhile, Telangana Health Minister Eatala Rajender defended the state government's strategy in a press meet on Friday evening, where he told reporters, “The perception that we are doing poor testing is entirely wrong. We told the same to the Centre today.”

The Telangana government is facing widespread criticism from Opposition parties and others over conducting fewer tests compared to other states and concealing its testing data.

Meanwhile, 10 new cases of COVID-19 were reported on Friday, taking the state's tally to 1,132. No deaths were reported and the death toll remained unchanged at 29.

Eatala Rajender said that a request was made to the Centre to include 14 districts, currently in orange zone, into green zone as no new case was reported from these districts for the last 21 days. If accepted, this will take the total number of districts in the green zone to 27.

The state has also urged the Centre to upgrade Suryapet, Nizamabad and Warangal Urban districts from red zone to orange zone.

Rajender said that this would leave only Hyderabad and adjoining districts of Ranga Reddy and Medchal in the red zone.

IANS inputs

Read: 

Telangana COVID-19 testing now is less than national average: What experts say

'It's a pain I'll carry to my grave': Hyderabad man who lost his mother to COVID-19

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