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​Check out the new airport guidelines for int'l & domestic travellers arriving in Maharashtra

International flyers reaching Maharashtra to undergo mandatory quarantine; RT-PCR must for domestic travel

Amid the emergent concerns of the new Omicron variant of the coronavirus, the Maharashtra government on Tuesday announced a mandatory quarantine for all international travellers arriving in the state. The guidelines have been made more stringent for travellers flying from at-risk countries, with the imperative of institutional quarantine on arrival.

Travel protocols for domestic travel have also been revised, added reports. Now, all passengers flying within Maharashtra will either have to be fully vaccinated or produce a negative RT-PCR test on arrival, conducted within 48 hours of the time of arrival. On the other hand, people flying to Maharashtra from other Indian states also have to present the negative COVID report, irrespective of vaccination status.

Mass cancellation of flights to Mumbai is likely

The Chairperson of the State Executive Committee, Maharashtra DMA on Tuesday issued an order to impose restrictions on air travel into the state, in wake of a successive pandemic threat. As per reports, the new protocols have been declared under the provision of the Disaster Management Act, 2005 and are likely to be followed by mass cancellation of flights to Mumbai.

"The restrictions imposed by the Government of India guidelines dated November 28, 2021, as well as future restrictions if any, shall act as minimum restrictions to be imposed", the circular read. In addition to this, the state has decided to cross-check passengers' international travel history with the help of DCP Immigration, Foreigners Regional Registration Office (FRRO), Mumbai Internation Airport Limited (MIAL) and concerned airlines.

A record of 15 days will be reviewed under this scrutiny, read reports. Incorrect information furnished by the travellers shall lead to action under the Disaster Management Act, 2005.

Guidelines for passengers arriving from at-risk countries

  • Passengers may be deplaned on priority and separate counters will be set up by MIAL and Airport Authorities for their prescribed screening
  • All passengers have to undergo institutional 7-day quarantine
  • During this period, compulsory RT-PCR tests will be carried out on days 2,4 and 7
  • If tested positive one any of the 3 cases, the passenger will be shifted to a hospital
  • On account of negative results, passengers still have to undergo 7 days of home quarantine

Guidelines for passengers arriving from other countries

  • Passengers will have to undergo a compulsory RT-PCR test at the airport
  • If tested negative, a 2-week home quarantine will be prescribed to the passengers
  • If found positive, they will be shifted to the hospital

Guidelines for connecting flights

  • International passengers having a connecting flight to any other airport in India (layovers at the airport), will have to undergo under RT-PCR test on arrival in Maharashtra
  • Passengers will be permitted to board the aircraft only if they test COVID negative here
  • The connecting airlines will share relevant information about such passengers beforehand to ensure a seamless transfer and segregation on arrival
  • If the passenger is taking a domestic connecting flight within Maharashtra, they will follow the quarantine guidelines drafted for direct international arrivals
All guidelines have been drafted to ensure maximum caution against the Variant of Concern (VOC) Omicron, read reports. The strict vigil will help persist the invasion of the new mutation into Maharashtra, curbing the chances of a successive virus strength.

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