An unspecified number of Indians were among the nearly 3,000 passengers and crew members on board a cruise ship quarantined off Japan due to diagnosis of coronavirus cases, the Indian Embassy here said on Monday.
Around 65 people tested positive of the virus on Monday, taking the total number of those infected on the ship to 135. Authorities had initially tested nearly 300 people when the ship arrived at the Japanese coast. Indian Embassy in Tokyo on Monday tweeted the information about the Indians on the ship.
“Many Indian crew & some Indian passengers are on board the cruise ship Diamond Princess quarantined off Japan due to Coronavirus (nCoV),” it tweeted, without giving a specific number of Indians on the ship. “In this context, any query please contact First Secretary (Consular) @IndianEmbTokyo at firstname.lastname@example.org @CPVIndia @MEAIndia @PMOIndia,” it said. Those on the ship have been asked to wear masks and allowed limited access to the open decks as they are advised to remain in the cabins most of the times to contain the spread of the virus, according to media reports.
Quoting an Indian crew member, identified as Binay Kumar Sarkar, on-board Diamond Express, NDTV news channel said there are 160 Indian crew members and eight Indian passengers on the ship. Sarkar, in a video recorded from the ship, appealed to the Indian government and the UN to segregate the Indians on board on urgent basis. “None of them have been checked (for coronavirus),” Sarkar, a chef from Bengal, said in Hindi. He was flanked by five of his Indians colleagues who were wearing masks.