India is closely monitoring the evolving situation in China following the outbreak of the mysterious Coronavirus which claimed the lives of 25 people and has infected hundreds.
The Indian Embassy in Beijing is in touch with relevant Chinese authorities in the capital city and Wuhan as well as Indians in Hubei Province.
"Embassy of India has been receiving queries from Indians in Hubei province as well as their relatives in India in connection with the evolving situation of the coronavirus epidemic in China. In this regard, Embassy of India is in touch with relevant Chinese authorities in Beijing and Wuhan as well as Indians in Hubei Province, especially in Wuhan. We are closely monitoring the evolving situation in China, including advisories issued by the World Health Organization (WHO) in this connection," said the embassy in a statement.
In view of the outbreak, China has suspended public transport in five cities - Huanggang, Ezhou, Zhijiang, Qianjiang and Wuhan in Hubei province, official media reported.
The Wuhan lockdown is a cause of concern for Indian students who still remained there. The city has about 700 Indian students, majority of them studying medicine. However, most of the students have apparently left for home for holidays.
The Airport Authority of India (AAI) has made necessary arrangements at the Chennai airport for the health screening of passengers arriving from China in the wake of an outbreak of infection caused by a newly identified strain of coronavirus.
The airport has been provided with logistics support with regards to the screening of passengers as per the instructions by Airport Health Organisation (APHO).
Meanwhile, an Indian nurse working in Saudi Arabia has tested positive for coronavirus, but with a different strain from the one that has claimed 18 lives in China, the Indian Consulate in Jeddah said on Thursday.
Earlier in the day, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs V Muraleedharan said an Indian nurse working at Al-Hayat hospital in Saudi Arabia was tested positive for coronavirus.
The Indian Consulate in Jeddah clarified that the nurse found positive for coronavirus was suffering for MERS-CoV and not 2019-NCoV (Wuhan).
The Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) was first identified in Saudi Arabia in 2012, while the 2019 Wuhan coronavirus is a novel one, meaning a member of the coronavirus family that has never been encountered before.
Chinese all over the world formally bid goodbye to the year of the pig and welcome the year of rat on Friday and welcomed the year of Rat. The Chinese government has given week long holiday.
In view of virus scare, several cities including Beijing have cancelled special events. The festival is also known as the Spring Festival.
(With inputs from agencies)