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India declares itself coronavirus free, with many speculating if Indians are resistant to the virus

As East Asia and the Middle East are in the haze of the novel coronavirus epidemic, China’s neigh-boring country India declares itself infection free recently arousing many to speculate if Indians are resistant to the virus, if Indian curries have antiviral properties or India just performs well on virus prevention and control.  There were only three confirmed cases of the coronavirus in India’s Kerala who studied in Wuhan, the epicenter. They were recently discharged from hospital after recovery, meaning India is now in-fection free, Indian media Hindustan Times reported.  The latest data by the World Health Organization also shows India had no new confirmed cases as of Saturday, excluding the previous three reported patients who became infected while in China.  The zero confirmed cases in India, a country of 1.38 billion,  aroused the interest of Chinese netizens to find out why. A story circulating on Chinese media joked that "Indian food and climate make it diffi-cult for people to catch epidemic diseases,” or “poor sanitation in India is what keeps India immune” went viral on Sunday.  Experts and residents from India dismissed popular speculations, saying the good epidemic situation in India is due to the rapid and strict response from its government as a nation with limited medical resources, while saying that if it had a similar outbreak to Wuhan, it would not be able to stand the onslaught of infection. When the first three confirmed cases were found, the local Kerala state government declared an emergency and prolonged the quarantine period of 14 days to 28 as a precautionary measure. Thousands of people were subsequently under observation in their homes, which is "a very timely and strong measure to curb the virus from a local government level," Xie Chao, an expert at Tsing-hua University's Department of International Relations, told the Global Times. "The Indian government acknowledges its limited public medical resources would pose a danger to the whole country, and may cause a national disaster if the virus is not properly controlled,” said Zhao Gancheng, a research fellow at the Shanghai Institute for International Studies.

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