Tuesday, July 13, 2021

Serbia quarantine rule poses fresh hurdle for city students

Ahmedabad: Parita Amin, an Ahmedabad-based student, who after a lot of efforts, finally managed to get a plane ticket to pursue higher studies in Canada finds her worries are not over yet. For the Serbian government has issued new Covid-19 guidelines according to which all foreign citizens arriving in Serbia from countries of special risk like India will receive mandatory quarantine measures for 7 days in home self-isolation.

Amin, an engineering graduate, who has enrolled for a masters’ degree in web designing at a university in Toronto, had earlier booked a direct flight for Canada on April 25 but the flight got cancelled on April 23 amid the second wave of Covid-19. She decided to take a longer de-tour even if it meant spending extra bucks to get there. As a result, she got a ticket to Canada by travelling from Ahmedabad via Mumbai, Frankfurt and Serbia before reaching her destination.

There are many like Amin from Gujarat who have got transit visas and plan to hop from one country to another and using stopovers at international airports to reach Canada in time for the second term of their college studies. Riddhi Patel, who holds a BE in computer science and has enrolled for a masters’ degree programme in hardware and networking programme at a college in Toronto says the change in quarantine rules in Serbia is going to be an expensive affair as candidates like her will have to cancel and book new tickets as well as bear the expense of getting quarantined at a hotel. There are over 200 students from India who got stuck in Belgrade due to the new quarantine rules, said sources. Serbia has become a transit point for Indians heading to Canada and the US after the two countries banned direct entry. Canada requires passengers from India to take a RT-PCR test from a third country.

13/07/21 Bharat Yagnik/Times of India

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