With the increasing number of Omicron cases in India, a new wave of fear and restrictions are emerging worldwide. India, which experienced a terrifying second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, has imposed travel restrictions in several states. In an effort to reduce the spread of the Omicron variant, state governments have issued covid guidelines for travellers from ‘at risk’ countries.
The list consists of travel restrictions imposed by various Indian states:
The Delhi government has made RT-PCR tests at the airport mandatory for international travellers from Brazil, the United Kingdom, China, South Africa, Mauritius, Hong Kong, Singapore, New Zealand, Botswana, and Israel. Passengers from other countries will face no restrictions. Children under the age of five are excluded from taking the test. Others, on the other hand, are required to remain at the airport until the results are received. If a person’s test results are negative, they must return home and take another test on the eighth day. If the test results are positive, the individual must follow the treatment protocol at the Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan Hospital.
The state government of Maharashtra has imposed a mandatory 7-day institutional quarantine for ‘high-risk’ passengers from South Africa, Botswana, and Zimbabwe due to a sharp increase in Omicron cases. The passengers will be tested again on the eighth day, and if the results are negative, a mandatory seven-day home quarantine will be imposed. If a person tests positive for covid-19, they will be transferred to a hospital for covid-19 treatment. An RT-PCR test is required of all international passengers with connecting flights. Domestic travellers must be fully vaccinated and have their RT-PCR test completed 48 hours before flying. Passengers from ‘high-risk’ countries must be checked separately at all airports across the state.
International flyers must be home quarantined for 7 days. If a passenger tests positive, the sample will be sent to genomic sequence and they will be admitted to an isolation centre. Eventually, they will be released at the discretion of the treating physician if the genomic sequencing is negative for B.1.1.529 (Omicron variant). However, passengers arriving from Europe including the UK, South Africa, Brazil, Bangladesh, Botswana, China, Mauritius, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, Singapore, Hong Kong and Israel, would need to follow additional measures on arrival at the Maharashtra airport.
4. West Bengal
It is mandatory for international passengers flying from Dhaka, London and Singapore must undergo RT-PCR and undergo home quarantine for seven days. Passengers who have tested positive must undergo institutional quarantine. Domestic travellers from other states must also carry reports of negative RT-PCR conducted 72 hours prior to the flight. The government has issued directions to set up a special ward at the government-run Beliaghata Hospital, especially for patients who test positive for Omicron.
5. Jammu and Kashmir
At the Srinagar International Airport, international passengers must take an RT-PCR test. Passengers from ‘at-risk’ countries will be subjected to a seven-day home quarantine. They must take another test on the eighth day, and if the results are negative, they must self-monitor for another two weeks. Travelers from ‘low-risk’ countries have been advised to keep a two-week self-monitoring log. Positive case samples will be sent to the designated INSACOG Genome Sequencing Laboratories (IGSLs) as soon as possible.
6. Tamil Nadu
RT-PCR test is mandatory for international flyers arriving from ‘at-risk’ countries including, South Africa, Brazil, Bangladesh, Botswana, UK, China, Mauritius, New Zealand, Singapore, Zimbabwe, Hong Kong and Israel, at any airport in the state.
Random sampling will be conducted on two per cent of travellers arriving from countries other than ‘at-risk’. If tested positive, the sample will be sent for whole-genome sequencing and the patient will be admitted to an isolation centre.
If tested negative, then a person must be home quarantined for 7 days and be tested again on the eighth day. For domestic flyers, the Arogya Setu app, thermal screening and E-Registration are mandatory. For flyers from Kerala, a double vaccination certificate or a negative RT-PCR test, not less than 72 hours, are a must.
International passengers flying from ‘at-risk’ countries (European countries such as the United Kingdom, South Africa, Brazil, Botswana, China, Mauritius, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Israel) must have an RT-PCR performed. If they test negative, they must be quarantined at home for 7 days before being tested again on the eighth day and subjected to another week of self-monitoring.
Those who test positive will be transferred to isolation units. Children under the age of five are exempt from the test. However, if they are symptomatic, they will be subjected to predetermined procedures. Domestic flyers must first register on the Covid-19 Jagratha portal and then go through thermal screening.
All passengers must have a negative RT-PCR report or a double-vaccination certificate (not less than 72 hours before the flight). Passengers who test negative will not be quarantined at home. If the domestic traveller tests positive, they must follow state-mandated isolation protocols.
As of November 28, all international travellers must fill out the Self Declaration Form (SDF) and upload negative RT-PCR test results for international arrivals, according to a notification from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India.
Visitors from the United Kingdom, South Africa, Brazil, Botswana, China, Mauritius, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Israel will be required to take an RT-PCR test. If they test negative, they should be quarantined at home for 7 days. Passengers who test positive will be taken to the isolation ward. The state government mandated that anyone entering the state register on the government website and download the Arogya Setu and Behavioural Change Management apps.