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Coronavirus in India: how the 2020-Coronavirus could impact the fast-growing economy

India reported the first confirmed case of the coronavirus infection in India on 30 January 2020 in the state of Kerala.

Since the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak in China, the highest number of suspected cases in India has been reported in the state of Kerala. Suspected coronavirus cases have also been reported in multiple cities such as New Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, and Patna.

Coronavirus cases in India: Confirmed, suspected and recovered

Coronavirus in India

Thousands of suspected cases have been tested resulting in 29 confirmed coronavirus cases in India. Italians touring in India have been tested positive for Covid-19 coronavirus. They have been quarantined at the Chawla Camp in New Delhi.

The first three Indians tested positive for coronavirus are from Kerala and have been discharged, but home-quarantined.

Coronavirus: Hyderabad (Telangana) situation update

One coronavirus-infected was identified in Hyderabad on 02 March. The infected person returned from Dubai to Hyderabad after completing a business trip.

On 04 March, an employee working at a company based in Raheja Mindspace, in Cyberabad, an IT cluster in Hyderabad, was found to be coronavirus-infected in initial tests. Contact tracing is being done currently and the samples were sent to the nodal lab testing for coronavirus in Pune, for a second round of testing. Raheja announced that Building No. 20 at Mindspace, Madhapur, is being sanitised and disinfected.

Hyderabad Metro trains are also being disinfected as a precautionary measure. Similar measures are expected to follow suit in other metros such as Delhi Metro and Jaipur Metro.

Health officials have identified a total of 88 people including family members who came in contact with the confirmed case in Hyderabad and taken their samples for testing. Among the 88 people, 45 have been admitted to the state-run Gandhi Hospital.

Coronavirus: Jaipur, Rajasthan, situation update

Coronavirus was confirmed on 03 March in a 69-year-old male Italian who arrived in Rajasthan. The first test on the Italian tourist yielded a negative result but a second test turned out to be positive. His wife was also diagnosed to be positive later, on the same day.

A total of 16 Italian tourists and one Indian driver were found to have contracted coronavirus.

Coronavirus: Delhi and Gurugram Covid-19 situation

An employee of payments company Paytm in Gurugram tested positive for coronavirus after returning from Italy, announced Paytm on 04 March, reported India Today.

On 02 March, two confirmed cases were reported including one in New Delhi. The Covid-19 infected in New Delhi was a person who returned from Italy.

The crew of the Air India flight that carried the infected in New Delhi has been asked to self-isolate at their homes for 14 days.

The Indian Ministry of Health announced on 03 March that samples taken from six people who came in contact with the confirmed case in New Delhi showed high viral loads. The samples have tested positive at the National Institute of Virology in Pune.

The government has set up a task force to monitor and control the Delhi coronavirus situation.

Coronavirus: Bangalore Covid-19 cases and update

The south Indian city of Bengaluru, the capital of Karnataka state, witnessed a techie working in Intel having been suspected to be exposed to coronavirus. The suspected person has been quarantined.

No cases have been confirmed of coronavirus in Bangalore (officially Bengaluru), which is popularly called the Silicon Valley of India for being a major IT services exporter.

Indians on quarantined cruise ship Diamond Princess

The latest coronavirus cases in India are reported from the Diamond Princess cruise ship quarantined off the coast of Yokohama in Japan. A total of 16 people from India have tested positive for the virus on the ship as of 26 February. The infected persons are reported to be a stable condition. A total of 132 passengers and six crew members from India are reportedly on board the ship.

A total of 119 Indian nationals along with five foreign nationals who have tested negative for the virus were evacuated in a special flight on 27 February.

Coronavirus: Visas cancelled for foreign nationals travelling from affected countries

India announced the cancellation of existing e-visas issued to all foreign nationals of China, on 05 February and advised Indians to avoid travelling to China.

Further, India announced that people travelling to China will be quarantined upon return. India temporarily suspended visa on arrival for Japanese and South Korean nationals on 27 February.

On 03 March, India announced the suspension of all visas issued to nationals of Italy, Iran, South Korea and Japan who have not yet entered the country. Visas issued to foreign nationals who travelled to China, Iran, Italy, South Korea and Japan who have not yet entered the country have also been cancelled.

The cancellation is not applicable to diplomats, officials of the international bodies, OCI cardholders and aircrew although medical screening is mandatory for all. Medical screening and submission of self-declaration form including travel history for all passengers arriving from the restricted countries are also mandatory.

Labs testing for coronavirus in India

The NIV and 15 other laboratories under the Indian Council of Medical Research’s (ICMR) Viral Research and Diagnostics Laboratories network are equipped to test samples.

The National Institute of Virology lab in Pune is serving as the nodal lab for coronavirus testing in India. The Pune lab has facilities for Covid-19 molecular diagnosis and next-generation sequencing.

The labs are equipped with reagents to test up to 25,000 samples. The government noted that 19 more labs will be operational soon to test samples.

The Indian government is in the process of adding more coronavirus testing laboratories in the country.

Impact on India’s trade with China

With China under lockdown, India is expected to witness a major impact on imports and exports in various industries including pharmaceuticals, electronics, mobiles, and auto parts.

China is the biggest exporter to India, followed by the US and UAE. In 2018, China exported goods worth $90.4bn to India and accounted for 14.63% of the exports.

In 2017, telecom instruments, electronics components, computer hardware and peripherals, industrial machinery for dairy, and organic chemicals were the top five items imported by India accounting for 46% of the imports from China.


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