277 evacuees from Iran are Covid -ve

Ordnance Factory Board designates 285 beds for corona patients

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 25

The authorities are collecting samples of stranded pilgrims in Iran and around 2,000 samples have been flown into India and those found negative for Covid-19 are being flown back in batches.

So far, 867 persons have flown back to India, including 277 who arrived today. These 277 have been put up at Army wellness centre at Jodhpur. The evacuees were screened on arrival at the Jodhpur airport and then taken to the medical facility which has been designed not just for isolation but also mental and physical wellness.

Those found positive have been kept at a “wellness facility” set up in the pilgrimage town of Qom in Iran with the support of the Iranian authorities.

Qom is an important place for Shia Muslims. Kargil in Ladakh is one such place which is dominated by Shias. Initially, the testing facility was set up at Qom, which has since been re-located to the embassy. On February 26, India cancelled all flights to Iran.

There were about 1,000 pilgrims in addition to other Indian diaspora stranded due to cancellation of flights. Army medical facilities at Jhansi, Binnaguri and Gaya have been kept at standby with an additional collective capacity of 1,600 in addition to those activated at Manesar, Jaisalmer and Jodhpur.

Meanwhile, the Indian Navy flew a team of four doctors from the Goa State Health Department and dropped them at Pune. The medical team led by Dr Savio Rodrigues, HOD Microbiology, Goa Medical College, will undergo training to set up a Covid test facility at Goa.

The Ordnance Factory Board has earmarked 285 beds for Covid-19 isolation wards. Forty beds have been earmarked in hospitals at vehicle factory in Jabalpur and 30 beds each at Metal and Steel Factory, Ishapore.

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