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Published On: Mon, Feb 10th, 2020

‘Please Save Us’: Coronavirus-Hit Japan Cruise Ship, Indians Urge PM Modi For Rescue

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**EDS: SCREENGRAB FROM A FACEBOOK VIDEO** New Delhi: In this screengrab of a SOS video Binay Kumar Sarkar (R) along with other Indian crew members of the quarantined cruise liner Diamond Princess, requests Prime Minister Narendra Modi to save them and the passenger. The coronavirus tally at the ship touched 137 Monday after 66 more passengers and crew members were tested positive for the infection. (SCREENGRAB/PTI Photo) (PTI2_10_2020_000203B)


KOLKATA: Panic has struck the crew and passengers of the luxury cruiseliner that has been quarantined off a port in Japan since February 5. Over 100 Indian crew members on board a Japanese cruise ship – diagnosed with the deadly Coronavirus – has made an anxious appeal to PM Narendra Modi and the Government of India (GoI) to rescue them in a Facebook video.
An Indian crew member on-board Diamond Princess that the captain of the ship announced today that 66 people have been tested positive for the new coronavirus. Binay Kumar Sarkar, a chef from north Bengal who had earlier gone on social media to appeal to the Indian government for help, told to a Indian TV Channel that there was full-fledged panic on-board.
In a video recorded from the ship, Mr Sarkar appealed to the government and the United Nations to segregate the Indians on board. “None of them have been checked (for coronavirus),” he said in Hindi, indicating five of his Indians colleagues. All the men in the video were wearing white masks.
“Please somehow save us as soon as possible. What’s the point if something happens (to us)…I want to tell the government of India, Modi-ji, please segregate us and bring us back home safely,” he said.

The cruise, called Diamond Princess, was carrying around 3,700 people when it arrived in Japan’s Yokohama last week. As per recent report shared by the Japan Health Ministry, another 65 people aboard the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship moored off Japan have been diagnosed with novel Coronavirus bringing the total number of known infections to 135.
In a video released by Crew member Binay Kumar Sarkar, it was understood that about 60 passengers and crew have been tested positive for the virus on the ship.
“Out of 3,700 people on-board, they have only checked 500 samples for coronavirus. No crew member has been tested yet,” Sarkar said in the video urging the Indian Government and the UN to segregate those infected from those who are healthy. “I request Prime Minister Narendra Modi to please save us and send us home safe and sound as promised,” Sarkar pleaded.
The cruise ship operator said 66 people had been newly diagnosed, mostly Japanese, but there were also Australians, Filipinos, a Canadian, a Briton and a Ukrainian. There was no immediate clarity on the discrepancy between that figure and the health ministry.

Indian Embassy in Tokyo on Monday tweeted  “Many Indian crew & some Indian passengers are on board the cruise ship Diamond Princess quarantined off Japan due to Coronavirus (nCoV),” it tweeted. Though it did not a specific number of Indians on the ship.(With Agency Inputs ).


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