The Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) has released a new directive stating the guidelines for the abroad passengers to follow on arrival at Delhi airport. The new guidelines will be in effect from December 1.
Restrictions for passengers from “at-risk” countries
According to the new guidelines, the airlines must inform passengers coming from “at-risk” countries that they will be tested for COVID-19 on landing. The passengers who get tested positive for the virus will be immediately moved to isolation, and their samples will be sent for genome sequencing to detect the Omicron variant. A dedicated 40-bed facility is arranged in Lok Nayak Jaiprakash Hospital, Delhi, for the purpose.
The passengers whose results are negative have to undergo home quarantine for seven days and will be tested again on the eighth day. If the test result further appears to be negative, the passengers will be advised for a self-quarantine for a week. The passenger is responsible for bearing the cost of the test.
The countries that come under the “at-risk” category include Brazil, Bangladesh, Botswana, China, Hong Kong, Israel, Mauritius, New Zealand, Singapore, South Africa and Zimbabwe.
Restrictions for passengers from other countries
Although no such stringent measures are currently issued for the passengers from other countries, they will be asked to self-monitor for 14 days.
The Ministry of Civil Aviation will also conduct random testing at the airport to detect the presence of the virus. These samples will also be sent for genome sequencing. Children of 2 years and below age are exempted from testing. However, if any child shows symptoms of COVID-19, then the child has to undergo testing.
The Delhi government will parallelly monitor the implementation of the DDMA order. For this purpose, the government has imposed the duty of Sub Divisional Magistrates (SDMs) and Additional District Magistrates (ADMs) at the airport. They will be appointed for duty at the airport from December 1 to May 15 on a day-night shift allocation.
DDMA has also asked the state health department to ensure enough beds, medicines, oxygen and other facilities to battle the possible hike in COVID-19 cases.
The DDMA guidelines for Delhi airport will remain in force until further instructions are issued.