Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala) [India], October 19 (ANI): Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan's remark regarding Onam should be seen in a constructive way ahead of many festivals in north India amid the COVID-19 outbreak, said Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Monday.
"Union Health Minister had always praised Kerala for our COVID-19 activities. His remark regarding Onam should be seen in a constructive way because many festivals are coming in North India. We should not let off our guard," said Vijayan.
Vijayan added that it is not true that during the Onam festival, the Kerala Government gave many relaxations.
"When the Kerala Government was focusing on COVID-19 activities, the opposition parties sent a wrong message to the society by organising large scale protests violating all COVID-19 protocols," said Vijayan.
"Some people are trying to defame Kerala without understanding facts regarding COVID-19 containment by the state government. Kerala was the first state to report COVID in India and at that stage, we contained it successfully. We were the first state to come up with COVID protocol," he added.
Kerala reported 5,022 new COVID-19 cases, 7,469 recoveries and 21 deaths today. Active cases in the State stands at 92,731, Kerala Chief Minister informed.
Meanwhile, Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja on Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan's remark about Kerala said, "I called up Harsh Vardhan Ji. He clarified he was giving an example that after Onam, Kerala showed high positive cases. He did not mention it was worst in COVID prevention activities."
on Sunday, the Union Minister had cautioned people to strictly follow coronavirus guidelines and avoid being negligent, citing the example of Kerala which during Onam saw a spike in cases due to negligence. (ANI)