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Cabinet Secy holds review meet over coronavirus

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New Delhi, Feb 5 (IANS) Union Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba on Wednesday held a review meeting to take stock of the novel coronavirus situation even as the government issued a fresh travel advisory urging everyone to refrain from travelling to China, saying intended visitors from China might apply afresh for an Indian visa.

Besides, from now on, anyone with a history of travel to China since January 15, 2020, could be quarantined.

The review meeting on the preparedness for tackling the coronavirus threat was attended by the Secretaries of Health and Family Welfare, External Affairs, Civil Aviation, Pharma, Dept of Health Research, Member Secretary (NDMA), and other officials from the Home Ministry, Commerce, Army and Defence.

The latest advisory on travellers from China said: “Intending visitors may contact Embassy in Beijing ([email protected]) or the consulates in Shanghai ([email protected]) and Guangzhou ([email protected]) to apply afresh for an Indian visa.

It also provided hotline numbers and emails, saying “the Indian Embassy in China continues to remain contactable 24×7 on two hotline numbers 8618610952903 & 8618612083629 and the dedicated email [email protected]

Indian nationals in need of any assistance may get in touch with the embassy on these hotlines and email. For any queries related to health, may contact on Ministry of Health & Family Welfare 24*7 helpline number +91-11-23978046 or email at [email protected]

As per the travel advisory issued by the Ministry of External Affairs, existing visas (including evisa already issued) are no longer valid for any foreign national travelling from China.

India’s evacuation of its nationals who were stranded in China’s Wuhan, the epicentre of novel coronavirus epidemic, was completed on Sunday with around 650 people brought back in two phases.

“The second batch of 330 passengers (including 7 Maldivian citizens) from Wuhan arrived in India on Sunday. The second batch of 300 people (including 7 Maldivian citizens) is housed at ITBP Chhawla Camp and 30 are in Manesar. They are being effectively monitored.” said a ministry statement.

According to government, 741 tests have been conducted so far for novel coronavirus out of which three positive cases were found in Kerala and are being monitored. They are clinically stable, it said.



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