India May Extend Ban On UK Flights: Hardeep Singh Puri


Union Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri on Tuesday hinted that there might be a short ban on flights to and from UK beyond December 31.

The hint comes a day after 6 returnees from the UK found positive for the new strain of the Covid-19.

I foresee a short extension on this temporary suspension. I do not see the extension to belong or indefinite,” Puri said in the annual media press conference on Civil Aviation.

The government has already imposed a temporary ban on flights coming to India from the UK from 22 December till December 31, 2020, because of the spread of the new coronavirus strain.

The Minister explained that the Ministry is monitoring developments in other countries too and will take further decisions accordingly.

What will happen on December 31. This is something on which we are applying our minds. We already on 29th (December). We are getting the full picture. I also see that flights from the UK are currently suspended in other countries too. We are monitoring this and will take a decision accordingly,” Puri has said.

From 25. November to 23. December 2020 midnight, about 33,000 passengers disembarked at various Indian airports from UK. All these passengers are being tacked and subjected by States/UTs to RT-PCR tests.


Of them, only 114 have been found positive. These positive samples have been sent to 10 INSACOG labs (NIBMG Kolkata, ILS Bhubaneswar, NIV Pune, CCS Pune, CCMB Hyderabad, CDFD Hyderabad, InSTEM Bengaluru, NIMHANS Bengaluru, IGIB Delhi, NCDC Delhi) for genome sequencing, said the government. Read the whole statement here.

All these persons have been kept in single room isolation in designated Health Care facilities by respective State Governments. Their close contacts have also been put under quarantine. Comprehensive contact tracing has been initiated for co-travellers, family contacts and others. Genome sequencing on other specimens is going on, the govt said in a statement released today.

So far, the UK variant of the coronavirus strain has been detected in Denmark, the Netherlands, Australia, Italy, Sweden, France, Spain, Switzerland, Germany, Canada, Japan, Lebanon and Singapore.

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Rohan Kumar
Rohan Kumar
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