Covid-19 reaches a small tribe in the Andaman Islands, India

The reach of Covid-19 spreads even further as a small tribe in India suffers positive tests of the virus.

THE Great Andaman tribe of the Andaman Islands in India has seen five positive tests for the Covid-19 virus recently, with two reportedly having to be admitted to hospital.

The isolated and remote tribe, consisting of around 50 people, are from the Andaman Islands which has a population of 400,000.

The islands themselves have had almost 3,000 cases of Covid-19 resulting in around 37 deaths.

The small tribe are made up of people who survived the colonisation of the islands in the 1850s by the British. That number started out at around 5,000 but due to diseases, namely tuberculosis, introduced from their contact with other societies, that number has dwindled dramatically.

Other tribes are also said to be at risk from the virus, with one in particular, the Jarawas, already experiencing positive tests.

Five social workers that were working with the Jarawa tested positive for Covid-19 with concerns raised due to the continued threat of poachers spreading the virus, who come to steal fish and other animals from the tribe.

The Andaman authorities have tried to protect the tribe but the Jarawa’s health remains in jeopardy because of the risk from poachers and the social workers.

“It is extremely alarming that members of the Great Andaman tribe have tested positive for Covid-19. The Andaman authorities must act urgently to prevent the virus from affecting more members and reaching other indigenous peoples,” explained a researcher from group, Survival.

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Written by

Matthew Roscoe

Originally from the UK, Matthew is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]


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