A doctor in Meghalaya, the only Covid-19 patient in the state, died on Wednesday morning in a hospital in Shillong. Six members of his family have now tested positive for the disease, Chief Minister Conrad Sangma said.

Dr John L Silo Rynthathiang, 69, was the founder of the state’s Bethany Hospitals. He had tested positive for the coronavirus on Monday evening, an unidentified family member told PTI.

Sangma tweeted, “I am saddened to inform that the first Covid-19 positive patient in Meghalaya passed away this morning at 2.45 am. My heartfelt condolences to his family and loved ones. May his soul rest in peace.”

Sangma said that 68 people related to Rynthathiang have been tested for Covid-19. Of these, patients who tested positive are family members and helpers of the doctor, he added. Six other cases are being retested, while the reports for the remaining people returned negative.

The Bethany Hospital in Shillong, where the doctor was admitted, along with the hospital’s second campus in Nongpoh in Ri Bhoi district, have been sealed and sanitised. All occupants at both the medical facilities have been put in quarantine inside the hospital premises, unidentified officials told PTI. As of now, authorities have traced about 2,000 people who had visited the Shillong wing of the hospital since March 22, officials added.

The Centre on Wednesday issued revised guidelines on the nationwide lockdown, which has been extended till May 3. The new guidelines noted some relaxations for certain sectors from April 20. India has reported 11,439 cases of the coronavirus and 377 deaths so far.

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