COVID-19: India confirms first positive coronavirus case in armed forces

18 March 2020 (Last Updated March 20th, 2020 15:05)

The first positive COVID-19 case in the Indian Armed Forces has been confirmed as the world’s second-most populous country works to avoid a coronavirus crisis.

COVID-19: India confirms first positive coronavirus case in armed forces
Ultrastructural morphology exhibited by coronaviruses. Credit: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention illustration.

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The first positive COVID-19 case in the Armed Forces of India has been confirmed as the world’s second-most populous country works to avoid a coronavirus crisis.

The member has been identified as a 34-year old soldier from Ladakh Scouts, an infantry regiment of the Indian Army known as the ‘Snow Warriors’.

The soldier is a resident of Chuchot village in the Leh district of Ladakh, India, according to media sources.

He re-joined the service earlier this month after a casual leave from 25 February to 1 March.

He contracted the infection from his father, who had returned from Iran on 27 February and has also been tested positive with the virus.

His father was quarantined from 29 February and reported positive on 6 March.

An army source said that the soldier was also quarantined on 7 March and tested positive on 16 March.

Both of them are currently in isolation at Sonam Nurboo Memorial (SNM) hospital.

The soldier’s entire family, including his two children and all those who have come in contact with him, have been asked to quarantine at the hospital.

Meanwhile, an Indian Army officer and woman are in self-quarantine at a Pune military institute after showing certain virus symptoms.

No COVID-19 tests have been recommended or conducted on the two individuals.

These new cases involving the armed forces have come to light as the total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases across India has risen to 149.

Currently, the Indian military is running two medical facilities at Hindon, Ghaziabad and Manesar, Haryana, to manage Covid-19 cases.

Similar facilities at Jaisalmer, Jodhpur, Suratgarh, Gorakhpur, Jhansi and Kolkata are currently being prepared to handle more civilians set to arrive in India amid coronavirus scare.

The Indian Army has postponed all of its courses and even cancelled ‘non-essential training, conferences and movement’.

The Indian Government has yesterday issued an additional travel advisory banning travel of passengers from Afghanistan, Philippines, Malaysia to the country until 31 March and subsequent review.