Amidst revision of state travel norms, the Maharashtra administration has instated a new 'ultra risk' category for flyers arriving from South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Eswatini and Lesotho. Besides them, all international travellers of other passengers with a travel history in the last 15 days from Omicron infected 'high risk' countries will have to undergo mandatory 7-day institutional quarantine on arrival.
Guidelines eased for travellers' convenience
Released only two days ago, Maharashtra's travel norms were identified to be in divergence with the Union and have been duly revised to align with the national guidelines. The State Chief Secretary of Maharashtra on Thursday relaxed some of the erstwhile travel restrictions imposed on international and domestic travellers. As per reports, the revised order has been issued at the request of the BMC Commissioner.
Now, international flyers coming from high risk and ultra high-risk countries have to undergo a mandatory RT-PCR COVID test on arrival and a 7-day institutional quarantine. COVID-19 tests will be conducted on the 2nd and 7th days of the confined. Those tested positive will be shifted to the hospital. Negative flyers on the other hand have to further undergo a 7-day home quarantine.
It may be noted that this rule still does not align with the Centre's directives. According to the Union's guidelines, the state should quarantine only those who test COVID-19 positive at the airport.
Domestic travel relaxed
The latest guidelines also exempt fully vaccinated domestic travellers from producing a negative RT-PCR COVID test upon arrival in Maharashtra. Notably, unvaccinated or partially vaccinated passengers still need to fly with a negative report, conducted within 72 hours of boarding.