Fifty Goans among the 119 Indians, who had been stranded onboard the cruise ship ‘Diamond Princess’ in Japan, were evacuated on Wednesday. The chartered flight of Air India carrying the Indians is expected to land at the Delhi airport on Thursday.
The evacuated Indians will be kept in isolation for the mandatory period of two weeks before they are reunited with families.
Of the 138 Indians onboard the luxury cruise ship ‘Diamond Princess’, 119 had been quarantined for the deadly coronavirus at the Yokohama port in Japan.
The evacuated Indians were airlifted by the Air India flight late Wednesday evening after being stranded for 22 days in Japan.
However, three Indians have opted to stay back in Japan, and 16 more Indians have been undergoing treatment in Tokyo.
Speaking to ‘The Navhind Times’, commissioner for NRI affairs Narendra Sawaikar confirmed that 50 Goans are among the Indian crewmembers and passengers from ‘Diamond Princess’, and are flying to Delhi.
He, however, said that Goan families will have to wait for a reunion with their loved ones, as the returnees will be quarantined for the mandatory period before being discharged.
Further details are awaited, he said, adding that the state government is closely monitoring the situation and is in constant touch with the ministry of external affairs.
When asked if the state government would send a medical team to Delhi, Sawaikar said that there are no such plans at the moment.
All facilities are being looked after by the central government. The state government will also be keeping a close watch on developments, he explained.
Sawaikar thanked External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and the Indian ambassador to Japan and the Indian embassy in that country for all the support and co-operation in bringing back the Goans stranded due to the outbreak of the virus.
The former BJP MP said that he had written to the Indian diplomatic mission in Japan to convey the anxieties of parents of the stranded Goan sailors.