Thiruvananthapuram: Nearly one-month lockdown curbs in Kerala are said to have helped to reduce the COVID positivity rate, which has fallen below 20 per cent, acknowledged Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.
But the Chief Minister cautioned that things have not yet reached a level to breathe easy and urged people to continue to cooperate with the guidelines.
On Wednesday, Kerala saw 28,798 people turn Covid positive after 1,44,372 samples were tested in the past 24 hours.
"As many as 35,525 people turned negative, taking the total cured in the state to 21,67,596, while 2,48,526 people were presently positive," he said.
On Wednesday, 151 Covid deaths were reported, taking the death toll to 7,882.
Across the state, there were 8,89,902 people under observation at various places, including 39,020 people at hospitals.
There were 880 hotspots in the state.
Vijayan said the decision was taken by the cabinet that for the next 12 months, every state minister will set aside Rs 10,000 every month towards the Chief Minister's Relief Fund.
The CM said that the government has also sought the help of various Malayali organisations abroad to see if they can source the medicines that are given for treating black fungus from the manufacturers.
"Once the medicines are sourced, the state Medical Service Corporation will make the arrangements for them to be brought here," he added.
He also said that strict protocols will be now in place for the manner in which Covid victims' bodies are moved from the place of death to the place where the last rites will be held.