As the Coronavirus scare rises in Maharashtra after two cases in total were confirmed, state cabinet minister and NCP leader Nawab Malik on Tuesday asked people not to panic and to take appropriate preventive measures.
"Two people have been tested positive for Coronavirus in Pune and Maharashtra Government is taking appropriate steps. People have to take some kind of preventive measures but they do not need to panic, I appeal to them. They need to stay alert," Nawab Malik told news agency ANI.
Speaking of the steps taken by the state government to contain the further spread of the deadly virus, Nawab Malik said Isolation wards have also been set up at different places and several awareness campaigns on Coronavirus have also been launched for the general public. NCP leader continued that Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope is taking cognisance of the current situation.
Two people from Pune, who had returned from Dubai recently and are related to each other, on Monday became first cases from Maharashtra to test positive for novel Coronavirus infection, a civic Health department official said.
Samples of a man and a woman having a history of travelling to Dubai tested positive in the evening, said Dr. Ramchandra Hankare, Chief Health Officer, Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC). Both of them are currently admitted at the civic-run Naidu Hospital, he added.
District collector Naval Kishore Ram said the duo had returned to Pune from Dubai on March 1 and went to their home.
"Till March 6, they did not have any problems. On March 8, they approached us after one of them started experiencing mild symptoms. Subsequently, their samples were sent for testing which returned positive on Monday," Ram said, adding that the duo is related to each other.
Meanwhile, officials of the PMC's health department said while one of the two patients displayed mild symptoms another does not have any symptoms. A day after they tested positive for novel coronavirus in Pune, district authorities said their family members have been admitted to Naidu Hospital here and their samples sent for testing to the National Institute of Virology.
Divisional commissioner Deepak Mhaisekar said the two COVID-19 patients were part of a group of 40 people who landed at Mumbai airport on March 1 from Dubai and had taken an Ola cab to Pune.
(With inputs from ANI)