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India halts UK flights till Dec 31 amid new strain of COVID-19

India halts

India has decided to ban all flights from Britain till December 31 as a precautionary measure amid emergence of new mutant variant of COVID-19 in that country.

The decision comes into effect from the midnight of Dec 22 and all passengers arriving before that will be tested on arrival through RT-PCR at airport.

“We have decided to take all necessary precautions as a result of the situation arising out of the spread of a new strain of coronavirus in some countries. All flights originating from U.K into India will be suspended temporarily from 22 Dec to 31 Dec 2020,” Civial Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri tweeted.

New strain of COVID-19, believed to be 70 percent more contagious than existing one has pressed panic button among European Countries. On December 19, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson had announced about new mutant and termed it as highly infectious. As a precautionary measure, Canada, Saudi Arabia, and several European countries have already suspended flights from the UK.

India also took cognizance of the situation and the Union Health Ministry called an urgent meeting of its Joint Monitoring Group to discuss the strategy. “The government is alert. There is no need to panic. Do not get yourself tangled in the imaginary situation, talks and panic,” Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan was quoted as saying.

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