According to official sources on Wednesday, starting next week, the government is going to make it mandatory for passengers travelling from China and five other countries to have a negative RT-PCR report. The next 40 days would be significant, they added, as January could witness a Covid rise in India.
Even if there is a wave, hospitalisation and death rates will be extremely low, according to officials in the Health Ministry. “Previously, it has been noticed that a new wave of COVID-19 hits India around 30-35 days after it hits East Asia…. This has been a trend,” an official said.
From the following week, overseas travellers arriving from China, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Thailand, and Singapore may be required to fill out “air suvidha” papers and submit to 72-hour previous RT-PCR testing.
Out of the 6,000 international travellers who were tested for COVID-19 upon arrival in the last two days, 39 were found to be positive. Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya will go to the Delhi airport on Thursday to assess its testing and screening capabilities, according to reports.
Days after Congress leader Rahul Gandhi was urged by Health Minister Mandaviya to consider halting the Bharat Jodo Yatra if COVID-19 protocols could not be followed, the planned tightening of Covid rules and warning of a new surge came to light.
To determine whether the nation is ready to handle a new spike in cases, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Health Minister Mandaviya conducted several high-level meetings.
On Tuesday, mock exercises were conducted at medical facilities all over India to assess operational readiness to handle any spike in COVID-19 infection. According to Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya, the nation must be vigilant and prepared since cases are increasing globally.
The Omicron sub-variant BF is what is behind the most recent increase in cases.