Coronavirus: In fresh video, Tamil crew member of quarantined ship in Japan says contacted by Indian embassy

The Indian embassy in Japan has gotten in touch with Indian crew members stuck aboard the coronavirus-hit cruise ship Diamond Princess quarantined off the Japanese coast after the group sent out a video plea for help.

In a new video, Anbalagan, a crew member on the Diamond Princess informed people that he was contacted by the members of the Indian embassy in Tokyo. He said that embassy officials have promised to support them in case of any need.

Anbalagan, who hails from Tamil Nadu, also further said that the cruise management has provided necessary essential commodities like thermometers, water, face masks and sanitising napkins for the crew. They have also promised that Anbalagan and others will return home in 10 days.

Giving an update on the health of the passengers aboard the cruise liner, Anbalagan said that samples of 32 more have been sent for testing.

In a series of videos, Angbalan has shown how the cruise ship is under lockdown. Anbalagan, in the videos, also showed that the passengers are all in the top decks and the food to them is being sent to their rooms.

In two videos, appealing to the government, Anbalagan and another Indian named Binay Kumar Sarkar can be heard saying, “There are protocols that need to be followed. There is fear that we might lose jobs or won’t get other jobs because of breaking the protocol. But what is the point of following the protocol when we don’t know if we will live.”

In the video, Binay Kumar Sarkar makes an appeal to PM Modi requesting him to help the Indian crew members onboard Diamond Princess.

Meanwhile, Japan will allow some elderly passengers on a quarantined cruise liner who test negative for the new coronavirus to disembark ahead of schedule, the health minister said on Thursday, as another 44 new cases were confirmed aboard the Diamond Princess.

With the number of those infected on the cruise ship now up to 218 plus one quarantine officer, concerns have been raised about conditions on the ship, where about 3,500 people remain on board.

The liner was quarantined on arrival in Yokohama, near Tokyo, on February 3 after a man who disembarked from the liner in Hong Kong before it travelled to Japan was diagnosed with the virus that has now killed more than 1,350 in mainland China.

About 80 per cent of the ship passengers were aged 60 or over, with 215 in their 80s and 11 in their 90s, according to Japanese media. The ship typically has a crew of 1,100 and a passenger capacity of 2,670.

The British-flagged Diamond Princess is managed by Princess Cruise Lines, one of the world’s largest cruise lines and a unit of Carnival Corp.

Kyodo news agency said the additional 44 cases included 43 passengers and one crew member, with the total number of confirmed cases in Japan rising to 247, including those infected on the Diamond Princess.

(with inputs from Reuters)

Source – India Today