Amid the new COVID-19 Omicron variant threat, India, on Monday, revised the travel guidelines for international passengers arriving in the country.
The new guidelines will come into effect from December 1.
"The existing guidelines have been revised in view of reporting of a new variant of SARS-CoV-2 (B.1.1.529; named Omicron) which has been now classified as Variant of Concern by the World Health Organization," the Health Ministry said.
According to a report in ANI, the guidelines require passengers to submit the self-declaration form on the online Air Suvidha Portal before their scheduled travel.
The form needs to contain the last 14 days’ travel details. Besides that, passengers will have to upload negative RT-PCR test reports that should have been conducted within 72 hours prior to their journey.
Post arrival, passengers coming from 'countries at-risk' will need to take the COVID-19 test. If tested negative they will follow, home quarantine for seven days.
They will have to undergo another test on eighth-day and if the results are negative, further self-monitor for the next seven days should be done. For the unversed, the 'countries at risk' include the United Kingdom, South Africa, Brazil, Bangladesh, Botswana, China, Mauritius, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, Singapore, Hong Kong, Israel. 5 percent of the total flight passengers will undergo post-arrival testing on random basis at the airport.
The government has also suggested states to gear up testing, monitor hotspot areas, and increase surveillance of international travelers amid the Omicron test.
On November 24, South Africa reported the B.1.1.529 variant to WHO. Earlier, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to stop flights from countries that are affected by the new COVID-19 variant.
"I urge Hon'ble PM to stop flights from those countries which are affected by new variant. With great difficulty, our country has recovered from Corona. We shud do everything possible to prevent this new variant from entering India," CM Kejriwal tweeted.