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No Indian citizen affected by coronavirus so far: MEA spokesperson

No Indian citizen has been affected by the new strain of coronavirus, MEA spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said on Sunday, as 250 to 300 Indian students continue to remain in Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak

India TV News Desk India TV News Desk
New Delhi Updated on: January 26, 2020 18:22 IST
A person suspected of having contracted coronavirus with

A person suspected of having contracted coronavirus with health officials in China (representative image)

No Indian citizen has been affected by the new strain of coronavirus so far, Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said on Sunday, as 250 to 300 Indian students continue to remain in Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak.

“We are also closely coordinating with Chinese authorities. As of now, we understand that no Indian citizen has been affected by the outbreak & that food & water supplies are available to them,” Kumar said in a series of tweets to provide the latest update on the coronavirus outbreak.

The official spokesperson said that the Ministry of External Affairs was in close touch with the Indian students who had been left behind in Wuhan and other parts of the Hubei province, which has borne the maximum brunt of the outbreak.

He said that India’s embassy in China had opened three hotline numbers to facilitate the return of Indian citizens trapped in the Hubei province and Wuhan. Wuhan had been put under lockdown with transport restriction in place, after local authorities realised the magnitude of the outbreak on Jan 23.

The reassuring message from the government official came just hours after Union External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said on Twitter that the Indian government was closely monitoring the well-being of Indian citizens in China.

According to China’s government, the new coronavirus has so far resulted in 56 deaths, with 1,976 cases having been reported so far. Many independent journalists and claims doing the rounds of social media, however, dispute the Chinese government’s figures and say that as many as 1 lakh cases have been diagnosed so far.

Meanwhile, at least 179 persons who had recently returned from China were placed under home observation in Kerala. Those put under observation are reportedly frequent travellers to China.

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