Sixteen Afghanistan evacuees out of the 78 that landed in India yesterday are coronavirus positive. As a measure of precaution, all 78 have been quarantined.
New Delhi: Sixteen Afghanistan evacuees out of the 78 that landed in India yesterday are coronavirus positive. As a measure of precaution, all 78 have been quarantined.
All 16 returnees are said to be asymptomatic – patients who don’t exhibit any symptoms for the virus.
Among those infected are three granthis who carried the copies of the Sikh holy scriptures back to India from Kabul. Union Minister Hardeep Puri, who received the copies of the Sikh holy scripture at the Delhi airport Tuesday morning, had tweeted a video of him carrying one of the copies on his head with reverence.
India has stepped up efforts to evacuate its citizens as well as Afghan citizens fleeing their country because of the worsening security situation after the Taliban’s stunning sweep to power last week.
A total of 626 people, including 228 Indian citizens, have been evacuated from Afghanistan till now, informed Minister Hardeep Puri. He also informed that 77 among them were Afghan Sikhs. The number of Indian citizens evacuated does not include those working in the Indian Embassy, Mr Puri added.
India had earlier announced that it would “facilitate repatriation to India of those who wish to leave Afghanistan” and said Hindus and Sikhs from the country will be given priority.
New Delhi began the complex evacuation mission, named “Operation Devi Shakti”, by airlifting 40 Indians from Kabul to Delhi on August 16, a day after the Taliban seized control of the Afghan capital city.
Thousands of Afghans have been crowding around the Kabul airport for over a week, in a desperate attempt to flee the country fearing the Taliban’s brutality.
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