Maharashtra govt issues guidelines for travellers arriving from 'at-risk' countries, mandates 7-day quarantine
Passengers from other countries will also undergo RT-PCR tests and if found negative will have to undergo 14 days home quarantine. In case of domestic travellers, all must carry an RT-PCR negative report of a test done within 72 hours of arrival.
Amid concerns over the Omicron variant of coronavirus, the Maharashtra government on Tuesday issued stringent guidelines for travellers on international flights as well as domestic passengers. Maharashtra has mandated seven-day institutional quarantine for travellers arriving in the state from ‘at-risk’ countries.
As per the guidelines, all international passengers will have to furnish details of countries they have travelled to in the last 15 days. Domestic passengers must carry an RT-PCR negative report. The Maharashtra government in a statement said, “The restrictions imposed by the Government of India guidelines dated November 28, 2021 as well as future restrictions if any, shall act as minimum restrictions to be imposed.”
All travellers into the state from any international destination shall be governed by directions of Govt of India in this respect, an official order states. Domestic travellers shall either be fully vaccinated or carry an RT-PCR test valid for 72 hours, it adds.
According to the guidelines, the international passengers arriving from at-risk countries (declared by the Government of India from time to time) may be deplaned on priority and separate counters will be arranged by MIAL and Airport Authority for their checking. All such passengers shall have to undergo mandatory seven-day institutional quarantine and RT-PCR test to be carried out on days 2, 4 and 7 for these passengers.
The order copy read, “If any of the tests is found to be positive, then the passenger shall be shifted to a hospital. In case of all tests coming negative, the passenger will have to undergo a further seven days of home quarantine.”
In wake of the same, in order to restrict the transmission of the said virus variant into the state, in exercise of the powers conferred under the Disaster Management Act, 2005, the undersigned in the capacity of the Chairperson of the State Executive Committee of the State Disaster Management Authority declared with immediate effect, the restrictions on air travel into the state.
According to an updated list by the Union government, the countries designated as ‘at-risk’ are the European countries, the UK, South Africa, Brazil, Botswana, China, Mauritius, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, Singapore, Hong Kong and Israel.
While no cases of Omicron have been reported so far in India, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan on Tuesday advised states not to let their guard down and keep a strict vigil on the international passengers coming to the country through various airports, ports and land border crossings.