Here’s how states are planning to curb spread of new COVID-19 variant

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After the emergence of the new COVID-19 variant Omicron has sparked a global panic, the international travel guidelines across several countries stand tightened. The Indian government is also taking steps to control the entry of the new variant into the country.

Amid the rising fears surrounding the Omicron variant, Prime Minister Narendra Modi also chaired a meeting with government officials regarding the vaccination drive in India, after which the PMO said, “PM highlighted the need for monitoring all international arrivals, their testing as per guidelines, with a specific focus on countries identified ‘at risk’. PM also asked officials to review plans for easing international travel restrictions in light of the emerging new evidence.”

The Centre has also alerted all the states and union territories over the spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19 and has asked them to monitor the travellers from several countries strictly. These countries are- South Africa, Brazil, Bangladesh Botswana, China, Mauritius, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, Singapore, Israel, Hong Kong, countries in Europe including the UK.

Here’s how states are planning to tackle the Omicron variant

Gujarat

The Gujarat government has made it mandatory for travellers from Europe, the UK, Brazil, South Africa, Bangladesh, Botswana, China, Mauritius, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, and Hong Kong to present a negative RT-PCR test upon arrival to the authorities if they have not been fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Delhi

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to halt all international flights to and from countries where the cases of Omicron have been reported. He said, “I urge PM to stop flights from those countries which are affected by new variant. With great difficulty, our country has recovered from Corona. We should do everything possible to prevent this new variant from entering India.”

Karnataka

All the international passengers are being thoroughly screened at the airports of Karnataka amid the spread of the new COVID-19 variant. The state government has also made a negative RT-PCR test mandatory for passengers travelling from Maharashtra or Kerala.

Uttarakhand

Uttarakhand chief minister Pushkar Singh Dhami has directed all the top officials and authorities of the state to make sure that the COVID-19 norms are being followed strictly. Arrangements in hospitals are also being made in view of the Omicron variant. Further, CM Dhami has urged the people of the state to get fully vaccinated as soon as possible.

Maharashtra

The Maharashtra government has made it mandatory for all domestic travellers to carry their vaccine certificates or a negative RT-PCR test upon arrival at the airport. All the international travellers will have to follow the guidelines set by the central government.

If a person tests positive for COVID-19 upon arrival, their samples will be sent to a genome sequencing lab, according to the official guidelines issued by the Centre.

(With agency inputs)

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