Confronted With New Challenges, Says Health Minister Harsh Vardhan

People give samples for coronavirus at an Indo-Tibetan Border Police quarantine unit


  • Health Minister Harsh Vardhan briefs members of Rajya Sabha
  • 29 people in India are infected by the Novel Coronavirus
  • An employee of payments firm Paytm has tested positive

New Delhi:

Health Minister Harsh Vardhan today briefed members of the Rajya Sabha on the steps taken by India to control the outbreak of the highly contagious Novel Coronavirus or COVID-19. Twenty-nine people in India are infected by the virus, which was first detected at a seafood market in China’s Wuhan in December last year.

“We’re confronted with new challenges… We have started a containment facility in Agra,” the Health Minister said. “We are particularly concerned about Indian pilgrims and students stranded in Iran (where the coronavirus cases are high). The Indian government is following up with Iran on their condition,” Harsh Vardhan said.

An employee of payments firm Paytm has tested positive for the coronavirus, pushing the e-wallet company to shut its Gurgaon office for two days.

The figures took a leap after a group of 15 Italian tourists tested positive for the disease in the last two days. An Indian driver, who was travelling with them, has also tested positive.

“The WHO (World Health Organisation) has termed this outbreak as a crucial concern. Though it has not declared it pandemic, it has asked countries to remain alert. Once the person is exposed to the virus, the disease…

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