States Issue SOPs For Passengers From U.K.

The Maharashtra government has come out with a standard operating protocol for dealing with passengers arriving from Europe, South Africa and the Middle-East amid concerns over the detection of a new variant of coronavirus in the UK.

“All the officials and staff of the airport should be made aware that all passengers coming from the above areas should be considered to be harboring the new strain of virus and should be handled in that manner,” a government circular said on Monday.

The Odisha and Chhattisgarh government also asked authorities concerned to undertake mandatory screening of persons with travel history to the United Kingdom.

After the Maharashtra government on Monday declared night curfew in municipal corporation areas in the state, the Pune police imposed curfew in the city from Tuesday night. It will be in force between 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. from the night of Dec. 22 to Jan. 5, said the order issued by Joint Commissioner of Police (Law and order) Ravindra Shisave.

The Delhi government on Tuesday said people who have arrived here from the U.K. recently are being traced and tested, while an institutional quarantine facility is being set up for positive cases at the LNJP Hospital. All passengers arriving from the U.K. are being tested for Covid-19 at the Delhi airport, Health Minister Satyendar Jain told reporters.

Virus Arrivals

At least 20 passengers from the U.K. tested positive for Covid-19 on Tuesday as the government issued a stringent set of SOPs mandating RT-PCR tests at airports for each traveller from the country and isolation in a separate unit of an institutional facility for positive cases in view of the new coronavirus strain.

There is no need to panic but there is cause to be more vigilant, said NITI Aayog member (Health) Dr. VK Paul.

As many as 591 passengers landed in Mumbai in three flights from the U.K. on Tuesday, a civic official said, adding none of them has been found symptomatic so far.

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