TN Reports First Case of Zika Virus; Health Minister Allays Fears

Chennai: With the first confirmed case of Zika virus reported in Tamil Nadu in the Krishnagiri district, Health Minister Dr C. Vijayabaskar today allayed the fears of the people, and said all preventive measures were being taken by the government.

Talking to reporters here, the Minister said the virus would not prove fatal. Allaying the apprehensions of the people about the Zika virus, he said all necessary precautionary measures were taken by the government to control it.

He said steps were also being taken to monitor spread of the virus, which was transmitted by Aedes mosquito that causes dengue fever.

Last evening, while chairing a review meeting, Health Secretary Dr J. Radhakrishnan said a 27-year-old person from Krishnagiri has tested positive for the Zika virus in the State.

This is the first case of Zika reported in Tamil Nadu. In May, a few positive cases were reported from Gujarat. Over 40,000 tests for Zika have been done in India so far.

Dr Radhakrishnan said the patient, hailing from N Puttur in Natrampalayam Panchayat, was treated as an outpatient at a Primary Health Centre and has completely recovered from it and was doing well.

Dr Radhakrishnan said the patient had developed fever, headache, redness of the eyes and weakness.

All routine investigations for dengue, chikungunya and leptospirosis tested negative. The case was diagnosed on July 1. Samples from three other fever cases in the area also tested negative.

Stating that about 200 suspected cases of the virus were tested at King Institute of Preventive Medicine and Research, here, he said this was the first one that has tested positive. It was also confirmed by two other labs in Pune and Manipal.