After outrage, Karnataka Health Minister claims his 'god can save us' statement misconstrued
Photo via Deccan Herald

Rattled by the spurt in Covid-19 positive cases, a Karnataka minister on Wednesday said only god would save the people from coronavirus pandemic.

"Only god has to save us from the virus or the people should be made aware of the infection so that they wear mask and maintain social distancing," state health minister B. Sriramulu told reporters here.

Chitradurga is 205 km northwest of Bengaluru in the southern state.

Noting that the infection does not differentiate between rich and poor, police, doctors, politicians or legislators, Sriramulu said the communicable disease could rise to alarming level in the ensuing two months, as the cases were rising daily the world over.

"Who can control corona? In the present situation, only god has to save us. Otherwise, the people should become aware of its (virus) consequences. If we have made mistakes, we are ready to face punishment for them," said Sriramulu, who is the ruling BJP's legislator from the Molakalmuru reserved assembly segment in the district.

Refuting the opposition Congress charge that the cases were rising in the state due to negligence by ministers, officials and legislators, Sriramulu said Karnataka was performing better than other states till the cases began to steadily rise since unlock started and the people were moving in violation of the guidelines.

He later gave a clarification regarding his statement on Twitter and wrote, “Respected KPCC President @DKShivakumar, This is a clarification regarding my words that have been misinterpreted and misunderstood.

While responding to claims of the opposition that the government's negligence, irresponsibility and the lack of coordination among ministers are responsible for the rise in cases in the state, I stated that “these accusations are far from the truth. People need to be aware and cautious to avoid the spread of the virus. This plays a vital role in controlling the pandemic.

If we fail at this crucial step the situation can get complicated. And if things go worse, then only God can save us." These were the words used out of caution. There's no need create panic in the public. Our Govt. led by our CM

@BSYBJP is working round the clock. This is a difficult situation for the whole world and we all are doing our best for the people of our state to win the battle against this pandemic.”

A record 3,176 cases were reported from across the southern state during the day, taking the Covid tally to a whopping 47,253, including 27,853 active cases after 18,466 were discharged, with 1,076 during the day, while 928 succumbed to the virus, with 87 in the last 24 hours.

In Bengaluru, which is under 9-day lockdown since Tuesday night till July 22 morning, 1,975 positive cases were registered, taking its tally to 22,944, including 17,051 active after 5,455 were discharged so far, with 463 during the day, while 437 died of the infection, with 60 in the last 24 hours.

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