Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala health minister KK Shailaja on Monday said the state government has declared coronavirus as state disaster.

"Kerala today declared the n-coronavirus a state disaster. We want to strengthen our surveillance system and precautionary measures," health minister Shailaja told reporters on Monday evening.

"When we came to know that n-coronavirus is rampant in China, we put in place our own system to contain the virus. There are many students from Kerala in China. We expect that they will come back and the coronavirus may affect the state," she added.

"We have three positive cases of coronavirus so far. The samples had been sent to the National Institute of Virology for testing. We are calling back the health officers from leave and putting in place all measures to contain the effect of this virus," Shailaja said.

Also read: Coronavirus: India's third case reported in Kerala's Kasaragod

Earlier on Monday, Shailaja had informed that the third case of coronavirus tested positive in Kasaragod, Kerala.

"Today (Monday) one more case has tested positive for coronavirus from Kasaragod. The patient is under treatment at Kanjangad District Hospital in Kasaragod. The patient's condition is stable. The student had returned from Wuhan," Shailaja said.

India's first confirmed case of coronavirus had been reported from Kerala a few days ago.

The virus originated in Wuhan in December and has since then spread to various parts around the world.

China has imposed quarantine and travel restrictions, affecting the movement of 56 million people in more than a dozen cities, amid fears that the transmission rate will accelerate.