A 57-year-old female shrimp seller, Wei Guixian, at a Chinese wet market in Wuhan is believed to be the ‘Patient Zero’ or the first person to have been diagnosed with the virus. Wet market refers to a market where live meat, fish etc are sold. It was reported as such by a Chinese digital news outlet, The Paper. Guxian developed cold on December 10 last year while she was selling seafood at the Hua’nan market.
On December 11, 2019, she visited a local clinic and was given an injection. When her condition worsened, Guxian rushed to the Eleventh Hospital in Wuhan. The doctors gave her some medicines but could not cure her disease. She then went to the Wuhan Union Hospital where a doctor had called her disease as “ruthless.”
The probable ‘Patient Zero’ was quoted as saying, “Every winter, I always suffer from the flu. So I thought it was the flu. I felt a bit tired, but not as tired as in previous years.” She was quarantined in late December and recovered completely by January 2020. Guixian is of the view that she had contracted the infection after using a public toilet used by other meat sellers.
Her daughter who would frequently touch Guixian along with her niece and the niece’s husband had tested positive for the Wuhan Coronavirus. The seafood vendors who worked in close proximity with her at the Hua’nan market had also contracted the infection. Speaking to The Wall Street Journal, the ‘Patient Zero’ said that the number of casualties would have been much lesser if the Chinese Government acted on time.
A December 31 statement from the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission revealed that Wei was among the first 27 patients to test positive for COVID-19, and one of 24 cases with direct links to the seafood market.
Taking a strong note on the possibility of China unleashing the biological weapon of Wuhan COVID-19, the Indian government on Friday demanded the strict compliance of a global treaty banning the production of the entire range of biological weapons of mass destructions. India also highlighted the need for an effective response to the challenges posed by new scientific developments in the area.
The significant statement by the Indian government comes at a time when the Chinese coronavirus has caused a health emergency across the world. This is the first time that India has tacitly insinuated that China may have used a bio-weapon against other countries. In making the fresh call to ban biological weapons on the occasion of 45th anniversary of the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BTWC) coming into force, India made mention of the fast-spreading coronavirus and its global impact.