India reported its second coronavirus case with another student who had returned to Kerala from Wuhan testing positive on Sunday, while 323 more Indians and seven Maldivians were brought back by air from the Chinese city, the epicentre of the outbreak. Totle number of evacuees reaches 654.
The government also announced a temporary suspension of the e-visa facility for Chinese travellers and foreigners residing in the neighbouring country and issued a fresh advisory saying anyone with travel history to China since January 15 can be quarantined.
The developments came as the virus, which emerged in early December and traced to a market in Hubei capital Wuhan that sold wild animals, has killed more than 300 people in China, infected over 17,000 others and spread to 25 countries.
Second case in India confirmed, again in Kerala. Both the cases in India have been reported in Kerala, where nearly 2,000 people are under observation in hospitals and homes.
The second patient is also a student from Wuhan in China. The patient had returned to Kerala on January 24. Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja said the condition of the student, currently admitted to the isolation ward at the Alapuzha Medical College Hospital, was “stable”.
The first case was reported from Thrissur on Thursday with a woman medical student who returned from Wuhan testing positive for the infection. Since the coronavirus outbreak in China, Kerala, which is thickly populated, has been on high alert as a large number of students from the state are studying in the University of Wuhan.
A second Air India flight in as many days evacuated 330 passengers, including seven Maldives citizens from Wuhan. Of these, 300, including Maldives citizens, have been housed at ITBP Chawla Camp and 30 are in the Army’s Manesar facility. They are being effectively monitored.
On Saturday, 324 Indians were brought back from Wuhan and admitted to the quarantine facilities set up by the Army and the ITBP, though none of them have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, according to officials.
— Anisha Dutta (@A2D2_) February 2, 2020
A video shared by government officials on Sunday showed a group of six students dancing and taking selfies inside the Manesar facility.
“The students are happy as they have been evacuated. You can see them dancing and making videos even though they have their face masks on.
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said in a tweet on Sunday, “7 Maldivians brought back with 323 Indians from Wuhan on the second @airindiain flight today. #NeighbourhoodFirst at work again.”
Five doctors from the Ram Manohar Lohia (RML) Hospital, who were onboard the first flight, were also present in the second flight.