Coronavirus | India shuts lab for COVID-19 in Tehran

Six-member team returns; special flights to evacuate hundreds of people

Published - March 23, 2020 10:56 pm IST - NEW DELHI

A medical laboratory that was set up in Tehran to test stranded Indians for COVID-19 has been shut down, official sources said on Monday. The facility was instrumental in determining the health status of hundreds of Indians stuck there.

Sources said that the “sampling facility” at the Embassy of India in Tehran is currently not operational as the six-member team that ran it on behalf of the Indian Council of Medical Research, left the country on March 18.

At least 255 Indians from Kashmir, Ladakh and Kargil had tested positive at the centre. Most of them are currently at a wellness centre, run jointly by Iranian authorities and the Embassy officials, in Qom. The medical team had conducted tests on around 1,200 citizens since their landing in the Islamic Republic on March 5.

Several thousand Indians, comprising of tourists, pilgrims, students and resident members of the Indian community, want to return home in view of the worsening situation in Iran.

Earlier, Mahan Air had proposed to bring back all the Indian nationals from Iran without any financial incentive. However, India did not respond to that proposal. On Monday, Officials informed that India will evacuate a few hundred of its stranded citizens by two aircraft of Mahan Air, which will fly back on March 24 and March 25.

India is currently blocking all international commercial airlines but those carrying Indians from Iran come under a special category.

0 / 0
Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.