PM Modi on Coronavirus: urges people to avoid “non-essential travel”, no travel abroad for Central ministers
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday urged people to avoid “non-essential travel” in view of the Coronavirus or COVID-19 outbreak and said that ministers of the Central government have been directed to not travel abroad in the coming days. He asked people to take precautions and not to panic.
“Say No to Panic, Say Yes to Precautions. No Minister of the Central Government will travel abroad in the upcoming days. I urge our countrymen to also avoid non-essential travel. We can break the chain of spread and ensure safety of all by avoiding large gatherings” PM Modi tweeted.
He also assured that all preventive and precautionary measures have been taken to ensure safety. PM Modi wrote that “The Government is fully vigilant about the situation due to COVID-19 Novel Coronavirus. Across ministries & states, multiple steps have been proactively taken to ensure safety of all. These steps are wide-ranging, from suspension of Visas to augmenting healthcare capacities.”
His tweets came after a press meeting by Union Health Ministry. At the meeting, it was said that the popular belief that COVID-19 virus will not survive Indian summers is unverified. The nature of the virus is still under study, joint secretary of Health Ministry Luv Aggarwal said. Union External Affairs minister S Jaishankar on Thursday said that “exceptional situations require exceptional responses”, adding that the current situation in the country is a “matter of concern”. The Union Health Ministry on Wednesday night announced the suspension of all foreign visas to India from March 13 at 12:00 GMT, which will be in place till April 15.
So far, 73 persons have tested positive for COVID-19 out of whom 56 are Indians and 17 are foreign nationals.