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Homeland Security

76-Year-Old Man Dies in India Marking Nation's First COVID-19 Death

Sputnik News

03:44 GMT 13.03.2020(updated 05:47 GMT 13.03.2020)

New Delhi (Sputnik): Towards the end of 2019, a novel coronavirus outbreak originating in the Chinese city of Wuhan begin its march to becoming a global pandemic. The cause of the virus is linked to China's unregulated trade and consumption of exotic wildlife animals including bats, snakes, and birds.

Updates by the Indian Ministry of Health and Family Welfare states that the country has recorded confirmed cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) and now the country's health ministry has confirmed the first death at the hands of the pandemic late Thursday.

According to the government of India, a 76-year-old man from the southern Indian state of Karnataka, who tested positive for COVID-19, succumbed to the illness.

The man, who had a history of asthma and hypertension, travelled to Saudi Arabia between January and February 2020 after which he landed in India's Hyderabad and travelled within the country.

​B. Sriramulu, Minister of Health and Welfare of Karnataka, tweeted details about the death.

As part of the tweet, Sriramulu revealed that the man who died had been suspected of being infected with the coronavirus.

​Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Indian Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan are yet to publicly address the nation's first COVID-19 death.

According to media reports, BG Prakash Kumar, the State Joint Director of Karnataka, has asserted that all necessary precautions are being made concerning the cremation of the deceased.

Earlier this week, the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared the coronavirus a pandemic.

All visas, except "diplomatic, official, UN/International Organisations, employment, project visas" have been suspended, as well as those with visa-free travel cards.

At present, over 128,000 people have been infected by the coronavirus and more than 4,700 have been killed worldwide.


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