Coronavirus: India reports first death, cases surpass 70 | News | DW | 13.03.2020
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Coronavirus: India reports first death, cases surpass 70

A 76-year-old man from the southern state of Karnataka is India's first SARS-CoV-2 fatality. He had traveled to Saudi Arabia in the days before his death.

India reported its first coronavirus-related death late Thursday, as the total number of people infected with SARS-CoV-2 in the country reached 74.

"The 76-year-old man from Kalburgi who passed away and was a suspected COVID-19 patient has been confirmed for COVID-19," B Sriramulu, minister for health and family welfare in the southern state of Karnataka, tweeted. "The necessary contact tracing, isolation and other measures as per protocol are being carried out."

The test kit for the man from Karnataka came back positive for coronavirus, days after he died on Tuesday. He had visited Saudi Arabia for a month at the end of January, and landed in Hyderabad on February 29.

While he initially showed no symptoms of the virus, he complained of a cough and fever on March 6. He died on March 10.

Boys wearing masks in New Delhi, India. (DW/A. Ansari)

People are hoarding products like face masks and sanitizers in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic

The Indian Army and the Indo-Tibetan Border Police have set up isolation facilities in Manesar and Chhawla. Indian Wuhan evacuees were quarantined at these locations, which have capacity for 800 patients. The army also has a facility in Rajasthan's Jaisalmer, where Indians evacuated from Iran will be quarantined after they land on March 14.

Primary schools and cinema halls in the capital city of Delhi have been closed to prevent an escalation in the number of cases in the world's second most populous country.

India has already suspended a majority of visas to the country until April 15, as it tries to control the spread of the disease.

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