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Coronavirus outbreak: Special Air India flight with 211 Indian students takes off from Milan

MILAN: A special Air India flight carrying 211 Indian students, who were stuck in Italy after flights were cancelled due to coronavirus outbreak, departed for India on Saturday (local time).

The flight which took off from Milan also has seven compassionate cases.

“211 students & 7 compassionate cases departed by AI flight #Milan. All those who helped us through this difficult situation, special thanks to @airindiain team & Italian authorities. Consulate will continue to ensure the welfare of all Indians in northern #Italy,” Indian Consulate in Milan tweeted.

The evacuation by India was carried out after the World Health Organisation declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic and said that Europe is the new epicentre of the lethal virus.

Italy on Saturday (local time) reported 175 deaths from coronavirus, raising the toll to 1,411.

Earlier, Air India had announced the cancellation of all flights to Kuwait and Italy till April 30.

India has carried out evacuations from several countries in the past few weeks. It has brought back its citizens from China, Japan and Iran as the number of cases of coronavirus continue to rise in these countries.