Coronavirus in Kolkata: Five West Bengal crew members may be released from coronavirus-stricken ship | Kolkata News

KOLKATA: Five crew members from Bengal, who are on board the British-flagged cruise liner Diamond Princess now off-shore in Yokohama in Japan, are expected to be released from the ship on Tuesday after they tested negative for COVID-19. Swarup Chapadar, one of the five crew members, said they have been informed on Monday that they would be taken out of the ship. The ship with 3,711 people on board, including 138 Indians, had reached Yokohama on February 3. Among the 132 Indian crew members, 14 have tested positive for COVID-19 till Monday, the Indian Embassy in Tokyo said.
“We have been told that we will be leaving the ship on Tuesday. Six crew members are from Bengal. Five have already tested negative. The sixth, who had tested positive for the first time on February 21, is awaiting second test results. Beyond this we know nothing. We believe we will be flown in to Indian quarantine facility for a fortnight’s stay. But we do not know the specifics,” Swarup told TOI from the ship. The sixth Bengali crew member, who is believed to be from Midnapore, is quarantined in his cabin quarters on the ship. According to Swarup, this colleague has shown no symptoms barring an occasional dry cough. His swab samples were collected on February 22 and the results are expected on Tuesday. “We hope we all (from Bengal) can leave together,” Swarup said.

The Indian Embassy in Tokyo in a statement on Twitter, said, “PCR test results announced today, from the samples collected earlier, included 2 Indian crew members, on board Diamond Princess, testing positive for COVID-19. Total number of Indian crew members tested positive so far is 14 — responding well to treatment.” In another message, it said, “Indian Embassy (Tokyo) hopes that the last groups of results expected to be announced tomorrow and day after will not have any more Indian nationals included in it, enabling the Embassy to further facilitate Indian nationals on board Diamond Princess.”
Swarup added: “We have learnt that four Indian crew members had tested positive for COVID-19 on Sunday, two more today. We had been working with them till the other day. We are scared.”
SDPO Diamond Harbour Sukanta Saha said, “Whenever we receive information on his return, we will start arrangements to quarantine him.”

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