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News18 » India
2-min read

Coronavirus: Health Minister Harsh Vardhan Meets Wuhan Returnees at ITBP Quarantine Facility

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan handed roses to those leaving the facility, and said that it was a 'proud and satisfying moment' that reports of all 406 people were negative.

PTI

Updated:February 17, 2020, 7:29 PM IST
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Coronavirus: Health Minister Harsh Vardhan Meets Wuhan Returnees at ITBP Quarantine Facility
New Delhi: Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare Harsh Vardhan interacts with Indians who were air-lifted from Wuhan following out-break of the deadly novel cornavirus, before their release from the ITBP quarantine facility, at Chhawla, in New Delhi, Monday, Feb 17,2020. A total of 650 people were brought back from Wuhan in China on Feb. 1- 2 in two 747 Boeing Air India aircraft. While 406 of these are being looked after at the ITBP facility, rest are at an Army center at Manesar in Haryana. (PTI Photo/Kamal Singh)

New Delhi: Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Monday met the Indians evacuated from the coronavirus-hit Chinese city of Wuhan at an ITBP quarantine facility here, as the first batch of nearly 200 of them left for their respective homes.

"Vardhan interacted with the evacuees housed at an ITBP camp, many of whom are being discharged to leave for their homes," the Health Ministry said in a statement.

They have all tested negative for the COVID19 or (Coronavirus disease 2019) and will be going back to their homes in phases, it said.

"It is indeed a proud and satisfying moment for all of us that our fellow citizens who have returned from Wuhan have been found to be healthy," Vardhan said as he handed over roses to those leaving the facility after completing the quarantine period.

The centre housed a total of 406 people, including seven Maldivians, who were evacuated from Wuhan in an Air India flight.

"After the final coronavirus test, reports of all 406 people living at our facility were found negative, the first batch was discharged today. We expect about 200 people to leave by tonight. The rest will be sent on Tuesday and in the subsequent days as per the travel plans of the inmates," ITBP spokesperson Vivek Kumar Pandey told PTI.

Harsh Vardhan also informed that as on date 3,21,375 passengers from 2,996 flights and 6,387 passengers from 125 ships have been screened for suspected infection. India has so far reported three confirmed cases of the virus, all in Kerala.

Two of the three medical students who had tested positive for novel coronavirus infection have now been discharged, Harsh Vardhan said. The condition of the third one is stable, he said.

Their samples were found positive among 2,571 tested in 15 laboratories across India.

A call centre established at the central level has received around 4,400 calls which included 390 international ones, Vardhan said, adding more than 360 emails have been received and responded to.

On Thursday, he had said India has extended support to the Maldives in testing samples and to Bhutan in managing the disease.

"India has also agreed to support Afghanistan in testing samples. India is also extending help to China by sending essential items for combating nCoV as per a commitment made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as a goodwill gesture," Vardhan had said.

He added that regular reviews are being held with officials from the ministries of Health, Defence, External Affairs, Civil Aviation, Home, Textiles, Pharmaceuticals, Commerce, Panchayati Raj taking part.

The situation in the country is monitored by the Prime Minister's Office on a regular basis, Vardhan had said.

Also, India is in touch with the Japan government regarding the four Indian nationals infected with coronavirus on board a cruise ship off the Japanese coast.

The Indian embassy in Tokyo said on Monday the four Indians were responding well to treatment.

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