Coronavirus
View of a quarantine camp. Image credit - @DDNewslive

A Bangladeshi and seven Mauritius nationals have been kept under observation in New Delhi as they have come to India after visiting coronavirus-hit China.

“After their arrival in India, they have been brought to the quarantine camp of Indo Tibetan Border Police (ITBP),” ITBP spokesperson Vivek Pandey told Northeast Now.

As the outbreak of 2019-novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) reaches India, the army and ITBP have come forward and started keeping the people, mostly coming from China, under observation.

As of Monday, 406 people are in the quarantine camp of the ITBP at Chhawala in New Delhi.

Being aware of the dreaded disease, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday set up a high level Group of Ministers (GoM) to monitor initiatives taken to fight caronavirus.

The GoM comprises union health & family welfare minister Dr Harsh Vardhan, civil aviation minister Hardeep S Puri, external affairs minister Dr S Jaishankar, MoS for home G Kishan Reddy, MoS for health & family welfare Ashwini Kumar Choubey and MoS (I/c) for shipping Mansukh Lal Mandaviya.

The GoM had its first meeting on Monday and reviewed the preparedness and steps taken by the health, shipping, external affairs, civil aviation and home ministries.

Also read: Coronavirus outbreak: Kerala confirms third case

The meeting was chaired by union health & family welfare minister Dr Vardhan.

A presentation of the status of the 2019-nCoV was made to the GoM.

The members were also apprised of the three coronavirus cases reported from Kerala, one of which was confirmed on Monday.

The preventive steps and measures taken for management of ‘novel coronavirus’ disease in India were presented, which included information about the revised travel advisories issued on Sunday regarding the temporary suspension of the e-visa facilities.

Travel advisory has been revised informing the public to refrain from travelling to China and that anyone with travel history in China since January 15, 2020 and from now on could be quarantined.

Further, e-Visa facility for Chinese passport holders has been temporarily suspended.

The e-Visa, already issued to Chinese nationals, is also not valid temporarily and the facility for submitting the application online for the physical visa from China is suspended.

It has been advised that people with compelling reasons to visit India should contact the Indian embassy in Beijing or consulate in Shanghai or Guangzhou.

Instructions to comply with the travel advisory have also been issued to all national and international airlines operating from China by the civil aviation ministry.

In addition, they were also briefed that as of today, a total of 593 flights have been screened covering a total of 72,353 passengers.

Screening of passengers is going on in 21 airports, international seaports and border crossings particularly with Nepal.

Universal screening in all flights from Singapore and Thailand besides Hong Kong and China is being carried out.

Further, 2,815 people are presently under community surveillance in 29 states and union territories.

Out of a total of 338 samples sent for testing, 335 have been found to be negative, 3 are positive, while 70 are being processed.

The ICMR National Institute of Virology (NIV), Pune has been made a nodal centre for coordinating diagnostics for ‘novel coronavirus’.

Twelve regional labs have been activated, standardized and are testing the samples.

The GoM was also apprised that adequate materials like Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) and N95 masks are available and the situation is closely monitored in all the states and union territories.

A 24×7 Control Room (011-23978046) has been made operational.

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