Industrialist Anand Mahindra on Wednesday requested the government to allow private sector to begin testing for coronavirus in the country as the number of positive cases neared 150 in India. The businessman said that while India has taken preemptive measures for containment of the virus, the country has done the least number of tests among the affected countries.
"India has done a fine job, so far, of managing the crisis. Preemptive measures for containment have been lauded the world over. But our testing rate could be our Achilles heel. We need to allow the pvt sector to begin testing & scale up our capacity dramatically," tweeted Mr Mahindra tagging Health Minister Harsh Vardhan.
India has done a fine job, so far, of managing the crisis. Preemptive measures for containment have been lauded the world over. But our testing rate could be our Achilles heel. We need to allow the pvt sector to begin testing & scale up our capacity dramatically. @drharshvardhanpic.twitter.com/iNq0RWDX6O- anand mahindra (@anandmahindra) March 18, 2020
Currently, all the 52 designated test centres for coronavirus across India are run by the government.
The total number of coronavirus cases in India reached 147 with 130 active cases as of Wednesday morning, the Union Health Ministry said.
These include 122 Indians and 25 foreigners, as per the ministry.
"The total number of active COVID-19 cases across India is 130 as on Wednesday till 9.00 a.m.," the Union Health Ministry said.
Across the nation, 14 patients have been cured and discharged.
A total of three deaths have been reported so far in India, one each in Delhi, Maharashtra and Karnataka.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) on Tuesday praised the Indian government's commitment to combat the novel coronavirus which has infected more than 168,000 people and killed over 6,600 globally after it orginated at an animal markedt in Chinese city of Wuhan.
"I think the commitment of the Indian government from the top level -- the Prime Minister''s office himself -- has been enormous, very impressive. This is one of the reasons why India is doing very well. I am very impressed that everyone has been mobilised," Henk Bekedam, the WHO Representative to India, said.