Monday, April 05, 2021

Mumbai, Bengaluru air passengers have to carry Covid negative reports to land in Assam

Guwahati: Air passengers from Mumbai or Bengaluru, disembarking at any airport in Assam, have been ordered to mandatorily carry a negative RT-PCR report, conducted within 72 hours prior to the journey. The order issued by the state health department, will come into effect from April 9. The test report should be verifiable using the QR code or otherwise, read the directive issued by the health department on Sunday in the wake of rising Covid-19 cases in the country. The airlines, operating flights to Assam, have been directed to allow boarding of passengers at Mumbai and Bengaluru airports of only those who carry negative RT-PCR reports.

"Any passenger from Mumbai and Bengaluru who arrives without a satisfactory RT-PCR report will have to undergo a paid Covid-19 test at the airport and will wait at a designated spot inside the airport premises at his own expense till his test result is available," said the order issued by the principal secretary to the state health department. It further clarified that if the test report turns out to be positive, the passenger will be shifted to home isolation or hospital, as per the treatment protocol.

The health department, however, has taken a stricter stance for rail passengers coming through Maharashtra or Karnataka, who will have to undergo screening for symptoms on arrival at railway stations in the state with immediate effect. Besides, the health department order also stated that Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) has to be conducted randomly on asymptomatic patients. But, all symptomatic rail passengers from the two states will undergo Covid-19 test.

"Around 5,000 passengers arrive at Guwahati airport everyday. Considering the present situation in Karnataka and Maharashtra, where the scenario is worrisome, we are focusing more on passengers from these two states. But, passengers from other states may have to pass through stricter Covid screening, if the situation does not improve," Assam NHM director Lakshmanan S told TOI on Sunday.

Most air passengers come to Assam from Delhi and Kolkata, but from Mumbai and Bengaluru airports also there are daily direct flights and this has turned Assam once again vulnerable to Covid.

In a partial modification of the health department's previous order reiterating the necessity of thorough contact tracing of all individuals found to be Covid-19 positive, the health department wants contact tracing of at least 20-25 persons linked to the infected patient. "Apart from rapid test, the RT-PCR test should also be carried out for the identified contacts in case the rapid test is negative," the order added.

04/04/21 Kangkan Kalita/Times of India

To Read the News in full at Source, Click the Headline


Post a Comment