32 new COVID-19 cases in Assam, tally rises to 378

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Guwahati, May 24: Thirty-two new coronavirus cases were reported in Assam on Sunday, taking the COVID-19 tally to 378 in the state, Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said.
Eight COVID-19 cases were reported from the Sarusajai Quarantine Facility in the evening, while two each from Tezpur Quarantine Centre and Jorhat were reported in the morning.
The other coronavirus cases were reported from Nalbari (six), Kamrup (five), Hojai (four), Kamrup Metro (2), Nagaon (2) and Morigaon (one).
“There has been a dramatic increase in the number of positive cases in the state during the last few days, but almost 90 per cent of the positive cases are from the quarantine centres, the minister said at a press conference here.
“If we had not followed the ruthless policy of quarantine, the infection would have spread to the community, he added.
Of the total 378 COVID-19 cases, 314 are active cases, 57 have recovered, four died and three have migrated.
Hojai district has the highest number of coronavirus cases followed by Kamrup (Metro), while Dhemaji is the only district in the state with no cases so far, he said.
Of the total cases, 271 people recently returned to Assam and 39 are related to the Tablighi Jamaat.
Among those from outside the state, the highest number of 108 positive cases are from Maharashtra followed by 34 from Delhi, 33 from West Bengal and 40 from Tamil Nadu.
“It has to be, however, noted that so far 60,384 people have entered the state by roads and trains, and they have been quarantined. Out of these, 271 persons have tested positive, the health minister said.
The Assam government’s ongoing surveillance has covered 25,000 villages and found only 23,000 people which is “very less and 6,000 of them were found to be suffering from severe acute respiratory infection (SARI) and influenza-like Illness (ILI)”, he said.
“Samples of 4,000 people were taken and tested for coronavirus. Not a single one tested positive. With this, we can claim that so far we have been able to save the community due to our quarantine policy, Sarma said.
The minister said though the number of cases are increasing, “there is no need to panic as we are prepared with facilities to serve five thousand people”.
“We have been planning meticulously for the last two months and the Assam government is adequately prepared to deal with five thousand patients, he said.
“During the last two months, we have been working with a strategy to create facilities. We have opened enough doors and have adopted the policy to open one door after the other as the situation arises,” the minister said.
“We have also ramped up the testing facilities and we felt proud that yesterday with 59,553 tests completed so far we had surpassed Kerala, considered a model for health care,” he said.
The seven laboratories in the state are so far conducting 2,500 tests daily, but the government expects to reach 5,000 in the next few days as automatic extraction machines are being acquired for the purpose, Sarma added. (PTI)