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Coronavirus

India's Home Minister Amit Shah hospitalized with coronavirus

Close aide to Modi is hardliner behind controversial citizenship law

India's Home Minister Amit Shah receives a flower bouquet upon his arrival at the home ministry in New Delhi, India in June 2019. Shah is a long-time aide to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.   © Reuters

NEW DELHI (Reuters) -- India's Home Minister Amit Shah has been admitted to hospital after catching the coronavirus, he said on Sunday, becoming the most senior politician in the country to test positive for the disease.

Shah, a close aide to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, heads a ministry that has been at the forefront of managing the epidemic.

India's coronavirus outbreak is the third worst in the world behind the United states and Brazil, with nearly 1.7 million confirmed cases and 36,500 deaths, according to a Reuters tally.

"I request all of you who came in contact with me in the last few days to isolate yourselves and get tested," Shah said in a tweet.

Shah, 55, said he had got himself tested after exhibiting initial symptoms of COVID-19. "My health is fine but I am being hospitalized on the advice of doctors," he added.

A ministry spokesman said he was unable to immediately comment on when Shah had last met with Modi.

Indian movie star Amitabh Bachchan, who was hospitalized on July 11 after being diagnosed with COVID-19, was discharged after his latest coronavirus test came back negative, his son Abhishek Bachchan tweeted on Sunday.

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