New Delhi: A resident of Kalaburagi in Karnataka, who had returned to India from Saudi Arabia around 10 days ago, has become the country’s first casualty due to novel coronavirus or COVID-19. The man had passed away on Tuesday night itself, but it was only on Thursday that his death was confirmed to have been due to COVID-19.Also Read - Coronavirus: No Handshakes, Cops to Greet People With Namaste in Maharashtra

The deceased was identified as 76-year-old Mahmad Hussain Siddiqui. He had returned from Saudi Arabia on February 29 and fallen ill soon after his return. Also Read - Coronavirus Outbreak: Remaining PSL 2020 Matches to be Played in Closed National Stadium in Karachi

In a statement, Director, Karnataka Health Department, said, “A 76-year-old man from Kalaburagi who passed away and was a suspected COVID-19 patient has been confirmed positive for COVID-19. Contact tracing, isolation and other measures being taken. Telangana government has also been informed as he went to a hospital there.” Also Read - Coronavirus: Miami Open Cancelled After Mayor Declares State of Emergency

Notably, Kalaburagi District Health Officer, Dr MA Jabbar, had, after the patient’s death, issued an official circular stating that he had died due to suspected COVID-19 virus. Today’s development, however, confirmed that the death was indeed due to coronavirus.

According to reports, the deceased was initially admitted to the Gulbarga Institute of Medical Sciences (GIMS). He was later shifted to CARE hospital in Hyderabad and was on his way back when he died. It was due to his admission at the hospital in Hyderabad that the Telangana government, too, has been informed about his death.

Coronavirus, or COVID-19, was officially declared a ‘pandemic’ by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on Wednesday. There gave been 74 confirmed cases of the virus in India thus far.