Tamil Nadu on Wednesday reported 48 more Covid19 cases, taking the total to 738, making it the second State with the highest incidence of this virus after Maharashtra.
Health Secretary Beela Rajesh told reporters on Wednesday that Chennai accounted for 156 of these cases, making it the worst affected among 14 affected districts in the State. This was followed by Coimbatore (60), Dindigul (46) and Tirunelveli ( 40).
With one more death on Wednesday, the toll has gone up to eight. Three of them were women.
Dr Beela Rajesh said that out of the 48 new cases, 42 got the infection from a single source - the Tablighi Jamaat conference held between March 8 and March 21 in New Delhi. Besides, eight of them travelled as a group and 33 others were their contacts.
Beela Rajesh said a Malaysian national who attended that event had also tested positive. Of the remaining six, two were already on quarantine and four others are from Chennai, with the source of their infection yet to be identified.
Meanwhile, a Covid19 positive patient escaped from the Villupuram Government General Hospital on Wednesday, two days after he tested positive for the disease.
Identified as a man from New Delhi, he was in prison in nearby Puducherry for two months and was released only on March 16. He then came to Villupuram, 50 km away. As he looked like a vagrant, people reported to the police who got him isolated in Government Hospital.
The Villlupuram police have sought the assistance of the Puducherry police to trace him.