Air India’s seven passengers who traveled from Delhi to Auckland in New Zealand on Sunday, tested positive for COVID-19 three days after their arrival, a senior government official said on Friday, Aug 28.
Earlier this month, all Air India passenger flights were banned to fly to Hong Kong until the end of August after 14 passengers tested positive for COVID-19 upon arrival on their Delhi-Hong Kong flight on August 14.
“Seven passengers on Sunday’s Air India Delhi-Auckland flight tested positive for COVID-19 three days after arriving,” announced the government official said.
However, the airline did not respond to PTI’s request for comment on the matter.
Special international flights are operating under the Vande Bharat Mission and bilateral air bubble pacts signed between India and various countries.
At a daily press conference in Auckland on Friday, New Zealand Public Health Director Caroline McElnay said, “There are five new confirmed cases of COVID-19 to report in the community and seven imported cases, bringing us a total of 12 new cases.”
The seven imported cases all arrived on the same flight on Aug 23 and tested positive on day three, she said.
These people will be taken to the quarantine facility at the Jet Park Hotel in Auckland, she added.
These people “traveled from a country where COVID-19 is common so it is very likely that they went undetected before boarding the plane,” she noted.
When asked what country the passengers were from, Robertson told reporters, “I don’t want to say what country because I don’t know what country each traveller was from, the flight was an Air India flight, but that does not mean that the people who came on that flight are necessarily from India. They are all people who are entitled to be in New Zealand.”