MP minister says Jamaat event led to spike in cases; tally rises to 2,387
Madhya Pradesh has drawn flak for its handling of the pandemic and is among the states, where the Centre has deputed interministerial teams to probe perceived lapses in efforts to control the disease.Updated: Apr 29, 2020 00:38 IST
Madhya Pradesh health minister Narottam Mishra on Tuesday blamed the attendees of a congregation at Tablighi Jamaat’s headquarters in Delhi that later emerged a Covid-19 hotspot for the growing cases of the disease in the state.
“Jamaat people mingled with people so deep that when our teams went to localities to identify people suffering from Covid-19, they were attacked with stones. People beat our doctors and spat on them intentionally. This resulted in a delay [in identifying and treating Covid patients] and the virus spread to other areas too,” said Mishra.
Madhya Pradesh has drawn flak for its handling of the pandemic and is among the states, where the Centre has deputed interministerial teams to probe perceived lapses in efforts to control the disease.
Mishra blamed the attendees on a day when the number of Covid-19 cases in the state rose to 2,387 while the virus spread to 31 of the Madhya Pradesh’s 52 districts.
Chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has also blamed Tablighi Jamaat for spreading of the virus in the state.
Public health expert Amulya Nidhi said the government has blamed the group to divert attention from its failures. “Let there be a review of the situation by an independent expert or experts. If the team’s finding is same as that of the government, then the government can say with authority that any particular group is responsible.”
Another public health expert, SR Azad, said the problem with the government’s approach from day one has been that it did not look beyond certain localities and groups to check the spread of the disease. “Hence, the measures expected to be undertaken were not taken like increase in number of labs, more testing, more surveys and screening...”
Azad said the first four Covid-19 cases were reported from Jabalpur and they were not Jamaat members. “They had a travel history. In Bhopal, more than 100 officials and personnel of health department were infected. It was not because of any Jamaat member.”