- 76-year-old man who recently returned from a trip to Iran has died
- All schools and colleges in Ladakh to stay closed till March 31
- New cases took India's official COVID-19 affected people to 40
A 76-year-old man who recently returned from a trip to Iran has died in Ladakh after showing symptoms associated with the coronavirus outbreak that has affected at least 40 people across India. The former policeman was admitted to a hospital on Saturday night and his death has prompted authorities to take precautions including cordoning off his village.
According to officials in the Ladakh administration, the man was admitted with conditions linked to a COVID-19 infection. Since he also has a history of other medical conditions, authorities are waiting for final test results to declare if he was indeed affected by coronavirus.
Dr Motip Dorjay, a health official in Leh, told news agency ANI, "He had a urinary tract infection due to which he died. He had some past history also. So to be more cautious, we have sent his samples to Delhi. We are in touch with Delhi team and the report should be out in two days."
The man had recently travelled to Iran on a pilgrimage and was on the same flight which had two people who have contracted the COVID-19 infection, sources said. The two people, 65 and 75 years of age, were the first cases of coronavirus reported in India's northernmost union territory on Saturday.
This has prompted authorities to take all precautions and cordon off his village. All schools and colleges in Ladakh have been asked to stay closed till March 31.
A similar case has also been reported in West Bengal, where a man kept in an isolation ward of a hospital in the Murshidabad district died on Sunday, a day after he was admitted with suspected symptoms of coronavirus following his return from Saudi Arabia.
Though his test results for novel coronavirus were awaited, it can be said that the man died probably of diabetes, Director of Health Services Ajay Chakraborty told news agency PTI.
Five new cases of coronavirus, including three who evaded screening on return from Italy, were reported in Kerala on Sunday, prompting the government on Sunday to sound a renewed alert and warn action against those hiding travel history to affected nations.
The new cases took India's official count COVID-19 of affected people to 40. Across the world, more than 1 lakh people have been infected and over 3,000 people have died because of the virus that is believed to have originated in Wuhan, China late last year.
The novel coronavirus spreads through contact with respiratory droplets spread during coughing and sneezing, doctors say. Besides keeping contact to a minimum with an infected person, the preventive measures include frequent washing of hands and use of hand sanitisers. Fresh tissues should be used while sneezing and coughing and then discarded, to ensure the virus does not spread.