Tuesday, May 18, 2021

LBC reveals over 100 flights from India landed in UK since country placed on 'red list'

Analysis of flight data by LBC shows that direct flights from India have continued to land in the UK at a rate of 4.5 per day, despite growing fears about a variant that has spread rapidly and quickly become dominant across much of India.

While the UK government has banned direct flights from 11 other Red List countries that have direct flights to the UK, including Brazil and South Africa, it did not adopt a similar policy when India was placed the list. Flights are also allowed from neighbouring Pakistan and Bangladesh.

Boris Johnson warned last week that rapidly rising cases of the named B1.617.2 variant, first detected in India, could derail plans to end social distancing on 21st June.

Last Friday, the Prime Minister held a press conference to warn the British public of ministers’ and scientific advisers’ fears over the variant. On that day alone, seven direct flights from India arrived in the UK.

NHS Test and Trace data shows that, in the 14 days between 22nd April and 5th May, 4,258 travellers arriving from India undertook Covid tests - far more than the number arriving from any other country in the world, except Pakistan. Of those arriving from India during the 14 day period, 299 (7%) tested positive for Covid.

18/05/21 LBC

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