India, April 30 -- The United States has allowed the voluntary departure of families of its diplomats at missions in India "out of an abundance of caution" as it has extended the "Do not travel" advisory for India in view of the Covid-19 epidemic, the state department spokesperson said Thursday.

Spokesperson Ned Price insisted, however, that the authorised departure is voluntary and not mandatory.

"Out of an abundance of caution, the Department of State authorised the voluntary departure, so-called authorised departure, of family members of embassy - at the US Embassy in New Delhi and the consulates throughout the country," Price said at a news briefing.

"Authorised departure doesn't force anyone to leave; it doesn't require anyone to ...