India suspends UK flights due to threat of new coronavirus strain

New Delhi: The situation in the United Kingdom has gone out of hand because of the new Coronavirus strain. Following this, India too has taken a few measures. Against the background of the new strain of Coronavirus detected in the United Kingdom, Health Minister Harsh Vardhan called for an emergency meeting on Monday morning. Identifying the threat of this new strain entering India and creating another mayhem, UK-India flights have been suspended with immediate effect. But the Health Minister has assured that there is no need for the citizens to panic as the government is alert and will take the required decisions as per the situation.  

corona-india-britainLast week, a new, faster spreading strain of Coronavirus was detected in the United Kingdom. This new strain has increased the speed of spread of the pandemic by 70%. The situation is getting out of control in the United Kingdom, and because of this, stringent lockdown rules have been enforced. As soon as the United Kingdom announced information regarding this new strain of Coronavirus, all the neighbouring countries sealed their borders. Flight services also have been suspended. Other countries also are making similar decisions.   

Against this background, the Union Health Ministry called for an urgent meeting of the Joint Monitoring Group on Monday. Along with the senior officials from AIIMS and ICMR, officials from the World Health Organisation also were present in the meeting. While speaking after the meeting, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan informed that the Union government is on alert. Harsh Vardhan said that the researchers are closely monitoring the developments regarding this new strain of Coronavirus. The government is fully aware as to what decisions to make and what needs to be implemented. Therefore, there is no need for citizens to panic.   

India has also decided to stop all flights to and from the United Kingdom under the Air-Bubble agreement. The flight services have been suspended from midnight of 22nd December. The civil aviation ministry said that RT-PCR tests would be performed on all the passengers, who boarded the flights from London, before the suspension, as soon as they land on any Indian airport. As of now, the flights will remain suspended till 31st December.   

Meanwhile, because of the new strain, the Maharashtra government has declared a curfew in municipal areas. This curfew will be in force between 11.00 pm to 6.00 am every night. The decision to quarantine all the passengers coming from European countries for 14 days has been taken. An independent quarantine facility will be created close to the airport for this purpose. All the passengers coming from other countries will be required to follow home quarantine.   

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