‘Centre trying for return of Kannadigas from Italy’

Centre taking steps for return of Kannadigas from Italy: C N Ashwath Narayan

Deputy Chief Minister C N Ashwath Narayan

The Centre has taken steps to bring back Kannadigas stranded in Italy’s Milan airport due to the COVID-19 epidemic, Deputy Chief Minister C N Ashwath Narayan told the Legislative Assembly on Tuesday.

Narayan was responding during Zero Hour on the issue that was raised by former Congress minister Priyank Kharge, who said hundreds of Kannadigas were stranded at Italy’s Milan airport, seeking the government’s intervention. 

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"The Centre is taking all measures. Those stranded in Milan have been screened and brought back," Narayan said. "The people stranded in Rome will be screened and they will also undergo blood checkup. Based on the reports, it will be decided whether they need to be isolated or not," he added. 

According to Kharge, some 400 Kannadigas were stranded in Italy. He said he had spoken with office-bearers of a Kannada organisation there. He said that 220 people were airlifted by the Centre on March 14. But, there are thousands of Indians of whom 400 are Kannadigas and 150 of them are students,” he said. 

"The Embassy is asking them to provide a certificate to say they’re negative for coronavirus. They’re not allowed to board the flight without the certificate. If they don’t get the certificate by tomorrow, there’s fear that a complete lockdown will keep them there," Kharge said. 

Noting that the ministers concerned were not present in the House, Speaker Vishweshwar Hegde Kageri said the issue will be taken up later for a detailed response by the government.

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