To curb the increasing number of influenza A (H1N1) cases in India, the health ministry wants External Affairs Minister SM Krishna to urge swine flu-affected countries to screen outbound travellers at airports, an official said in New Delhi on Wednesday.
"Otherwise (without screening of outbound passengers) we would be burdened with a large number of cases which may subsequently spread the diseases in our community," read a letter written to Krishna by Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad on Tuesday.
"We expect a substantial inflow of Indian students returning for the vacations. In this regard, the Ministry of Health wrote to the Ministry of External Affairs to prevail upon affected countries, especially the US, to screen passengers who are showing symptoms of the illness," the health ministry official said.
India has so far reported 11 confirmed swine flu cases, including two human-to-human transfer cases.
Citing that all swine flu cases in India have come from the US, the letter read: "You may be aware that the total number of lab confirmed flu cases and number of affected cases are increasing. The US and European countries are worst affected.
"In fact, all the nine imported cases detected in India are from the US. The other two confirmed cases have caught the infection from person coming from the US."