Thiruvananthapuram, June 27 (IANS) With the death toll in Kerala due to various types of fevers, including dengue and typhoid, crossing over 200, Leader of Opposition Ramesh Chennithala on Tuesday demanded that a central expert team be sent to the state to detect some of the new diseases reported.Also Read - Crorepati Overnight! Luck Shines on Kerala Auto Driver As He Wins Rs 12 Crore in Onam Lottery

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Tuesday engaged in a cleanliness drive in his home district Kannur, while CPI-M Secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan was out on the streets in the state capital along with senior party leaders and cleaned up the state-run General Hospital, where thousands are seeking treatment for fever. Also Read - Kerala Lockdown: State Imposes Stringent Lockdown In Urban, Panchayat Wards | Check Guidelines Here 

Besides dengue and typhoid, leptospirosis and H1N1 are also being reported in the state. Also Read - Kerala Lockdown Update: Kerala to Reopen Schools From November 1. Details Here

Chennithala termed Kerala Health Minister K.K. Shailaja “an abject failure” and demanded her resignation.

“We are not going to make this epidemic-like situation in Kerala into a political issue where lakhs are down with fever and the death toll has crossed more than 200 in the past few months. While the neighbouring states have all effectively contained the spread of fever, in Kerala it has been a callous attempt to tackle the fever outbreak,” Chennithala told reporters here.

“I will ask the Union Health Minister (J.P. Nadda) to send a high-level expert team to Kerala to ascertain the real cause of death as a few new diseases seem to have been reported here,” he added.

He alleged that “precious time was lost to commence the sanitation drive” and that funds meant to be given to various local bodies were “diverted to a different programme”. He alleged that a CPI-M feeder organisation was given Rs 2 crore.

Chennithala pointed out that Culture Minister A.K. Balan and Education Minister C. Raveendranath are convalescing at the hospitals with fever.

He said the figures released by the State Health Department do not reveal the true picture of the raging fever as these figures relate to only those who have sought treatment in state-run hospitals.

The Health Minister, however, maintained that incidents of fever have come down.

This is published unedited from the IANS feed.