THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Thursday stressed the need to bring rapid test kits from Hong Kong to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Revealing the details of the videoconference he had with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, he said Kerala has raised the importance of introducing rapid test kits as early as possible to contain the virus in the state. The Prime Minister responded affirmatively to the request of Kerala, he said at a press conference in Thiruvananthapuram after the COVID-19 review meeting.
The hassle-free goods movement through the checkposts bordering Karnataka was also taken up by the state in the conference.
Another issue put forth by the chief minister was the welfare of the overseas diaspora to which the Prime Minister responded that he had taken it up with all embassy heads and heads of various countries.
Earlier, in a letter to Union External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar, the chief minister sought his intervention to bring back the bodies of people who died in Gulf countries due to various other illnesses in the wake of the international travel restrictions. The Center should take steps to bring the bodies through cargo flights, he said.
Further, immigrant workers in the Gulf countries usually stay in large numbers in the same accommodation. So, the Centre should take steps to ensure all the required quarantine facilities in the Gulf countries, for which Indian community welfare funds should be used, he said.
A lot of Malayali nurses have been working in the health care sectors of many countries where the safety of the Indian workforce has to be ensured. The services of ambassadors deputed to various countries should be used to ensure the welfare of the Indian diaspora, he said.