After nearly five months, Tamil Nadu’s daily coronavirus tally fell below 2,000 on Friday, helping active cases drop below 18,000. The state has reported the fourth-highest number of cases in the country.
With 1,939 new infections, the total caseload crossed 7.54 lakh while the number of persons cured climbed to 7.25 lakh with 2,572 people discharged on Friday.
The number of active cases in the state now stands at 17,748, according to a Health department bulletin.
The state registered 14 deaths, seven each in government and private hospitals, while the total number of fatalities was 11,454, the bulletin said.
Chennai topped the list of fresh infections at 512, followed by Coimbatore at 179 and Chengalpattu with 145 new cases.
Many districts returned cases in double digits, while Tenkasi logged just three, according to the bulletin.
The total number of samples tested by RT-PCR so far was 1.09 crore. Tamil Nadu does not use Rapid Antigen Diagnostic Tests (RADT), it said.
The state government on Thursday put on hold its decision to reopen schools from November 16 for classes 9 and above.
Like in most parts of the country, schools have been closed in Tamil Nadu for over seven months since the beginning of the pandemic.
Colleges and universities will start from December 2 only for research scholars and final year postgraduate students of science and technology streams, the government said. They too were scheduled to reopen on November 16.
The government said the opinion on reopening of schools was divided after state-wide consultations with parents and teachers on Monday. Parents of some schools wanted the institutions to reopen, but others were against such a move because of the Covid crisis, the government said.
However, there is criticism that the ruling AIADMK and the opposition parties violate Covid norms and prohibitory orders at official, party and protest events. The state police too has faced critiism for not stopping these and often regulating and facilitating such gatherings.