The second Air India flight carrying 323 Indian and seven Maldivian citizens from China’s Wuhan city – the epicentre of the deadly coronavirus outbreak – landed in New Delhi on February 2nd, 2020. The first flight, carrying 324 Indian nationals from the Wuhan landed in Delhi on the morning of February 1st, 2020.
With this, a total of 654 Indians have been evacuated from Wuhan where the outbreak of deadly coronavirus has killed over 300 people. Till now, two people from Kerala have tested positive for the virus in India. They have been kept in isolation ward and their health is being closely monitored.
The death toll from the coronavirus outbreak in China had reached 304. The virus has infected over 14,380 people and new 2,590 cases of infections from the coronavirus outbreak have been reported in China promting global travel restrictions and evacuations.
The World Health Organization has declared the coronavirus as a public health emergency of international concern. There is no specific cure or vaccine.
Vikram Misri, the Indian ambassador to China thanked the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China and local authorities across Hubei province for their assistance.
“A special word of appreciation for two of our officers who are on board the plane – Deepak Padmakumar and M Balakrishnan – they showed exemplary fortitude and a real spirit of public service by travelling to ground zero in #Wuhan to coordinate airport arrangements. Kudos to both,” he tweeted.
Due to high temperature, six Indians could not board the first flight as they were stopped by the Chinese immigration officials. On the other hand, 25 others stayed back on their accord. Misri told reporters that there may still be about 100 Indians in Hubei province for which Wuhan is the provincial capital.
Lockdown measures and restricts of travel continue in China to curb its spread. Travel restrictions have been tightened across the country and wearing masks in public is now been made mandatory in some cities. Total lockdown have been imposed in Wuhan, and the Hubei province it is located in.
Indian Army has also set up a quarantine facility near Delhi in Manesar for all those who have been evacuated from China’s Hubei province. People will be monitored for signs of any infection for 2 weeks by qualified medical professionals.