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India bans flights from the UK to prevent imported cases

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A health worker collects a swab sample from a resident to test for the Covid-19 coronavirus at a sample collection centre in Hyderabad on October 19, 2020. (Photo by NOAH SEELAM / AFP)

Several passengers from the United Kingdom have been confirmed to have tested positive for the novel coronavirus after arriving in India in the past two days.

In order to strengthen the prevention and control of imported cases of the novel coronavirus, the Indian government decided to ban all flights from the United Kingdom to India from 22 to 31 this month, and re-test all passengers from the United Kingdom for the last month or so for the novel coronavirus.

Indian government officials confirmed on the 22nd that six passengers on a flight from London, the British capital, to New Delhi, India, tested positive for the novel coronavirus on the 21st.

According to an official quoted by Indian media, the flight arrived at 11:30 p.m. on the 21st. Five of the 266 passengers on board were tested positive for the novel coronavirus at New Delhi International Airport. Another passenger on the same plane transferred to Chennai, a city in southern India, and tested positive for the novel coronavirus after his arrival. Serum samples from the six travelers have been sent to India’s National Center for Disease Control for study to confirm whether they are related to the mutant novel coronavirus that appears in the UK.

It is reported that two other passengers from the United Kingdom tested positive for the novel coronavirus at Kolkata Airport on the 20th. In light of the current epidemic in the UK, the Indian government has decided to temporarily ban all flights from the UK to India.

The ban will take effect from 23:59 local time on the 22nd of this month and lasts until 23:59 local time on December 31.

The Ministry of Health of India also announced on the 22nd that all incoming passengers from or transit from the United Kingdom from November 25 to December 23 will be re-tested for COVID-19.

Such passengers must fill in forms to declare their travel history in the past 14 days, and those who test positive will be quarantined separately.

According to data released by the Ministry of Health of India on the 22nd, as of the morning of the same day, the cumulative number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the country exceeded 10.07 million, and the cumulative number of deaths was 146,111.

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