Srinagar/Jammu: Over 40 residents of Jammu and Kashmir's Budgam district who have returned from coronavirus-hit Iran and China will be kept in nine isolation wards, an official said on Monday.

District Development Commissioner (DDC), Budgam, Tariq Hussain Ganai, said 41 residents of Budgam, in central Kashmir, who arrived from Iran and China will be quarantined at 76-bed facilities established at nine isolation wards in the district.

The DDC said this while chairing a meeting to review preparedness for coronavirus threat. Ganai said while 31 residents have returned from Iran, 10 have come from China.

"They will be admitted to isolation wards for their quarantine to ensure proper care and treatment to infected, if any, to control the spread of the disease to others," he said.

The DDC instructed Budgam chief medical officer to establish a control room with a landline phone facility at his office immediately and ensure all quarantine facilities are available and ready for suspected persons.

During the meeting, the DDC was informed that all those who were admitted to quarantine isolation wards in the district have tested negative.

Five groups comprising 160 pilgrims from the district are expected to return from various countries in a few days and would also be quarantined. Students who are returning from Iran and China would also be taken to isolation wards for proper check-up, he was informed.

In Jammu, the Yatri Bhawan, which is used as a base camp during the annual pilgrimage to the holy cave shrine of Amarnath in south Kashmir Himalayas, has been turned into a quarantine facility with 20 suspected cases presently lodged there, officials said on Monday.

Citing the latest figures, the officials said a total of 669 travellers and those who came in contact with the suspected cases have been put under observation in Jammu and Kashmir till date.

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