[NDTV] 'Running Out Of Food, Water': Indian Students In China Amid Virus Scare
A group of eight Indian students studying at Wuhan University of Science and Technology in China have appealed to Indian government to make all possible efforts to rescue them at the earliest as they were running short of food and water in their dormitory due to the continued shutdown in the city, which is the epicentre of the deadly coronavirus outbreak.
The Indian Embassy in China has contacted the stranded students and promised possible assistance. The students continue to be anxious as the virus is spreading in the city.
The stranded students belong to Assam, Delhi, Maharashtra, West Bengal and Jammu and Kashmir.
Gaurav Nath, a 22-year-old student from Assam who is pursuing Material Science and Engineering from the university, told ANI over the phone from Wuhan that they were facing problems due to lockdown as shops and transport systems were closed.
"Due to the coronavirus outbreak in the city, we have been advised to stay indoors. Hence we are stuck in our dormitory (on the campus). We are being allowed to go out for only two hours a day to buy essentials but there is a lockdown in the city. All the shops and transport systems are closed. There is a shortage of essentials and we will soon run out of food and water," he said.
"The Indian embassy in China is in constant touch with us for the rescue. We appeal to the Indian government to rescue us at the earliest," he added.
Wuhan has been under lockdown for days with transport suspended and people being advised to stay inside their houses.
Meanwhile, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on Tuesday approved Air India flight to Wuhan for the evacuation of Indian citizens from the coronavirus-hit Chinese city.
An Air Indian Boeing 747 has been kept on standby for the evacuation of Indian citizens from Wuhan.
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar told media persons in Vadodara on Tuesday that the embassy was in touch with the Chinese government and efforts are being made for the evacuation of stranded Indians.
"Our Embassy is in contact with the Chinese government. We are trying to evacuate people, most of whom are students, from Wuhan city by sending a plane. Efforts are on. I can assure you that the central government is working on it and very soon, some solution will be found," he said.
The number of deaths from the infectious virus has gone up to 106 in China.
Chinese health authorities on Tuesday announced that 4,515 confirmed cases of the disease have been reported in 30 provincial-level regions.
The virus has also spread to some other countries including France, where three cases have been reported so far.
Many countries including India are screening travellers from certain parts of China for symptoms of the virus at airports.
Coronaviruses (nCoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV).
Coronavirus is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans. Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties.
In more severe cases, the infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure, and even death.
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