Rise in Kerala Covid cases makes Shailaja face reality



Photo: IANS

Gone are the days when Kerala State Health Minister K. K.Shailaja was omnipresent in the TV channels taking all the accolades, when the Covid pandemic was gripping the country and Kerala was fighting it, but today she is hardly visible.

On Thursday, Kerala saw the highest single-day hike of 4,351 new Covid-19 cases taking the tally of the active cases to 34,314, while 87,345 people have been cured. In the past one month alone close to 50,000 new positive cases were recorded. A total of 489 deaths have been recorded so far.

On Thursday, she openly admitted that the state was more vulnerable compared to the neighbouring states, as things are changing fast.

Shailaja, was at the centrestage ever since the first case in the country was registered in Thrissur on January 30. What gave her the confidence was the way she led her team of medical professionals in containing the Nipah virus in the state in 2018.

With the media also highlighting Shailaja in the way Covid was being tackled, even as the developed countries were fighting hard, she at one point of time was one of the most sought after politicians by the media, including the international media.

But the first strike against her came from Leader of Opposition Ramesh Chennithala, describing Shailaja as one having a 'media mania' and asked her to concentrate on fighting Covid only.

At that time, Chennithala was slammed and he went quiet for sometime, but not for a long time. He struck back when the state's Covid figures started to rise at an increasing rate.

Shailaja's Thursday statement was an earnest call to the society at large that there should be a heightened vigil to check the spread of Covid-19 and appreciated the manner in which people did quite well during the national lockdown period. She warned that the state has the highest density of population besides a huge elderly population and not to mention that Kerala is the national capital of diabetes.

Incidentally, all these health characteristics that she highlighted have always been there and there was nothing new.

Chennithala called Shailaja's statement about the 'flattening of the curve' as nothing but an imaginary thing and pointed out that it was like running a marathon and the Left government declared they have won the battle against Covid after running just 100 metres.

With more and more restrictions being eased, it remains to be seen what is in store for Kerala. And with Shailaja cautioning the people, it appears things are not rosy for the state and the question now is -- will the bouquets that was received sometime ago turn to brickbats. - IANS