Chennai: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami on Thursday sparked a row in the state political circle after he claimed that “coronavirus is a disease of the rich people, not poor”. Also Read - Coronavirus Found in Bat Species From Kerala-Himachal-Puducherry-Tamil Nadu, Scrutiny Underway

“They (rich) brought it here from other countries. They (rich) have imported the disease from foreign countries. This disease did not emerge from here,” news agency ANI quoted the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister as saying. Also Read - Coronavirus: Day Before PM's Address, Tamil Nadu Extends Lockdown Till April 30

Hitting out at Palaniswami for his statement, the DMK called it a “classic misfiring of government priorities”. Also Read - Desperate For Alcohol Amid Lockdown, 3 Men in Tamil Nadu Die After Drinking Paint Varnish

“The chief minister has a known penchant for misunderstanding and misfiring. It is a misunderstanding, in this day and age, that only the rich travel overseas,” News18 quoted DMK spokesperson Manu Sundaram as saying.

“The focus should be on testing, tracing and containing. However, the AIADMK government is focusing on misleading claims such as poor vs rich. This is a classic misfiring of government priorities.”

Further, confirming the number of cases in Tamil Nadu, Palaniswami said that 25 tested positive in the last 24 hours. The number of persons who lost their lives due to Covid-19 in the state stands at 15 and the number of patients discharged is at 180, he added.

With the 25 new cases, the total number of persons infected with coronavirus was 1,267, he asserted, adding that the number of persons testing positive for coronavirus infection in the state is coming down due to the actions taken by the state government.