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Over 16K onboard 452 ships not allowed to disembark at Indian ports

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New Delhi, March 5, 2020 –

As many as 16,076 passengers from 452 ships from China, or having any history of travelling to countries badly hit by coronavirus have been scanned and not allowed to disembark at Indian ports as a precautionary step.

“All ports handling EXIM cargo and handling cruise ships have been instructed to take special precautions and ensure 100% thermal screening of the crew/passengers, Self Declaration from the crew/passengers and tie-up with the regional unit of NDRF for third party check at ports. Immediate instructions have been issued to stop disembarkation of the crew/passengers having travel history from the infected countries” the Ministry of Shipping said on Thursday.

All ports have been directed to procure thermal scanners and necessary protective gear as required, setting up of isolation wards and ensuring medical facilities and subsequent treatment availability as per guidelines of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

Last month, the government had directed all 12 major ports to immediately put in place screening, detection and quarantine system for disembarking seafarers and cruise passengers as a preventive measure against the coronavirus outbreak.

The Union Ministry of Shipping in India ordered all states to place 204 minor and 12 major ports in quarantine mode to screen for the novel coronavirus on ships docking from China.

At least 19 more laboratories are operating to conduct tests for COVID-19. Earlier, there were 15 laboratories involved in the process.

The new coronavirus that broke out in the Wuhan city of China last year and spread to more than 60 countries is now making its presence felt in India too.

At least 29 positive cases of COVID-19 have been reported till Thursday and the numbers are beginning to increase.

As on March 4, at least 28,529 persons were brought under community surveillance and are being monitored.  (Agency)

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