1st coronavirus case in Assam
Assam on Tuesday became the third state in the Northeast to register a coronavirus case, a 52-year-old man from Karimganj district with travel history. The first case was reported from Manipur and the second from Mizoram.
Health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma confirmed the development through a tweet but said further details will be disclosed later. “A 52-year-old person has been found positive for #Coronavirus and is Assam’s first #Covid19 patient. He is undergoing treatment at Silchar Medical College. His condition is stable,” his tweet said.
Sarma also said that the state was better prepared to check the spread of the virus, something which would not have been possible had the positive case been detected 15 days earlier. However, he made it clear that people have to ensure lockdown till April 14 and maintain social distancing to check the spread.
The infected person of Karimganj is now undergoing treatment at Silchar Medical College Hospital and his condition is stable, the minister tweeted.
The patient returned from Delhi on March 6 and reached Karimganj. He visited Hatigaon in Guwahati from Karimganj via Badarpur on March 16 and returned to Karimganj on March 18. He went to Srigauri hospital near Badarpur after experiencing fever, cough and respiratory distress. The sample was sent to Silchar Medical College Hospital (where it was found positive) and also to Pune’s NIV, which confirmed it as positive too.
An official source said Karimganj deputy commissioner Anbamuthan M.P. rushed to the house of the person and arranged to send his wife and two sons to SMCH for quarantine. The person is a resident of Hasanpur of Srigauri under Badarpur circle of Karimganj district. The administration is now tracking the travel history of the person and contact tracing.
Another source said the person was suffering from cancer and he visited Cachar cancer hospital in Silchar for check-up after returning from Delhi.
He went to Delhi for professional and treatment purposes, the source added.
SMCH principal Dr Babul Bezbaruah said the patient had visited New Delhi on March 5, via Guwahati. In New Delhi, he visited the Jama Masjid and then returned to Guwahati on March 11 and stayed in Athgaon at a relative’s place. On March 13, he returned to Badarpur on the Rajdhani Express. Bezbaruah said the patient’s version was confusing.
Additional reporting by our special correspondent in Guwahati