No shortage of testing kits, masks in Karnataka: BSY

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Bengaluru, 29 Mar 2020: There was no shortage of masks and testing kits for detecting coronavirus cases in Karnataka and the government would import them if a need arose, Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa on Sunday said.


Apprising leaders of political parties on measures taken by his government to combat spread of coronavirus, he also told an all-party meeting that the government has decided to provide life insurance cover to police and civil workers and has taken extra precautions to maintain supply of food grains.


“There is no shortage of testing kits, medicines and masks. If there is need, we will import more… We will distribute testing kits to all the district and Taluk hospitals,” he was quoted as saying in a government release.


The state has so far reported 76 COVID-19 cases including three deaths and five discharges.


At the meeting held in the Vidhana Soudha here, former chief minister and senior Congress leader Siddaramaiah said there were shortcomings in the screening of passengers coming from abroad and stressed on the need to maintain supply of essentials.


Yediyurappa said supply of foodgrains would be made through Public Distribution System and the government had taken extra precautions to avoiod any difficulties.


He told the leaders that there was no restriction on agriculture activities in the state.


“I have been regularly holding meetings since March 13 regarding the measures taken to contain the transmission of COVID-19,” the chief minister said.


Health Minister B Sriramulu, Medical Education Minister Dr K Sudhakar, IT-BT Minister C N Aswath Narayan, Deputy Chief Minister Laxman Savadi, Siddaramaiah, JD(S) MLAs H D Revanna, D K Shivakumar and former speaker K R Ramesh Kumar attended the meeting.


Yediyurappa said a task force comprising of ministers and officials has been formed to oversee the implementation of the government orders in view of the 21-day lockdown.


He highlighted the prevailing situation across the globe saying normal life has been paralysed everywhere.


The chief minister also briefed the leaders about the number of clinics all over the state, availability of medicines and protection gear for the doctors and in quarantine rooms in the state.


Flagging concerns over screening process, Siddaramaiah said around 4,500 people were yet to be tracked, which need to be taken up on a warfooting.


“The government is saying that we have not reached the third stage but in Nanjangud, a person contracted the disease though he does not have any travel history. This must be probed,” he said.


The former former chief minister asked the government to make sure that the free distribution of food grains to weaker sections take place without any difficulty from April 1, as announced by the Central government.


He objected to police ‘excesses’ while enforcing lockdown.


Siddaramaiah also asked government to bring the police personnel under special insurance cover.



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