Travel Guidelines Mumbai – A tourist from Brazil at the Taj Mahal after it reopened to visitors following the easing of coronavirus restrictions in Agra [File: Money Sharma/AFP]
India has reopened to fully vaccinated foreign tourists on charter flights in the latest easing of coronavirus restrictions as infected numbers drop.
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Officials said on Friday that foreign tourists on scheduled flights will be able to enter India from November 15.
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This is the first time that India has allowed foreign tourists to enter the country since March 2020 when it imposed its first nationwide coronavirus lockdown.
It is not clear if arriving tourists will have to quarantine but they must be fully vaccinated and tested negative for the virus within 72 hours of their trip.
A policewoman rides a segway between the Gateway of India and the Taj Mahal Palace hotel in Mumbai [File: Punit Paranjpe/AFP]
The decision, announced by India’s home ministry earlier this month, comes as daily infections in the country have fallen below 20,000 from a peak of 400,000 in May and more people have been vaccinated.
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India has provided more than 970 million vaccine doses. Approximately 70 percent of the eligible adult population received at least one dose.
However, the easing of restrictions on foreign tourists visiting the country coincides with the domestic tourism season and the festive season in India. This has already alarmed health officials, who have warned against complacency.
Earlier this month, the Indian Council of Medical Research, India’s leading medical body, warned that “revenge tourism” could lead to an increase in COVID-19 cases if tourists do not strictly adhere to safety protocols.
According to official data, less than three million foreign tourists visited India in 2020, which is a decrease of more than 75 percent compared to 2019.
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The development and construction of components for the gold standard in-house RT-PCR test has enabled the country to stop relying on imports and ramp up testing during the second wave of the pandemic.
Scientists at India’s most advanced Biosciences Innovation Lab, Center for Cellular and Molecular Platforms, or C-CAMP, in Bengaluru, are working with local manufacturers to develop more affordable diagnostic technologies with financial support from the Rockefeller Foundation and help from the Indian government and Tata Consulting Services. .
Because many of the components of the real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction, or RT-PCR, test were not made in India, the country relied on imports when the pandemic first emerged in early 2020.
“Around 150 companies that together are able to produce 1 million RT-PCR tests per day, approximately 800,000 rapid tests each day, are already part of the suite,” says Lalith Kishore, chief operating officer of the COVID-19 Scale-Up Program at C- CAMP.
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“A lot of these companies have enabled a complete reversal in terms of our dependence on imports in terms of diagnostics.”
With global trade nearly halted, and huge demand for test kits from the US and UK, deliveries have also been delayed.
When 29-year-old Sanchi Jawa and her father, Harish Jawa, 59, first developed symptoms of COVID-19 during the early stage of the first wave of infection in India, they had to pay nearly $70 for an RT-PCR test.
They could afford the test, but Jawa believes it is out of reach for the majority of the country, which, according to the World Bank, has a per capita income of less than $160 a month.
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“(RT-PCR tests) should be, you know, within the reach of the common man, and everybody should be able to get it done,” she says.
“Because most people, like the majority of people who have not been tested, because they will be, you know, it will cost us 800, 2,000 or 3,000 rupees, and so it spreads. You don’t get tested, you don’t know what you’re carrying.”
Volunteers perform in a street play during a COVID vaccine awareness campaign in Nizampur village on the outskirts of New Delhi [File: Manish Swarup/Associated Press]
At that time, most components of the RT-PCR test – the reagents, primers and mixers needed for sample analysis – were not manufactured in India and had to be imported from China and South Korea, driving up prices.
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Chemical components such as amidite and deoxyribonucleoside triphosphate are essential to the analysis used to detect the presence of the virus.
The scientists worked with Indian manufacturers to develop and increase production and create a market for locally made test kits.
According to Kishore, the public-private partnership has helped more than 160 Indian companies innovate, build mechanisms and mass manufacture more than 1 million RT-PCR test kits per day.
“By building more in India with reagents that are developed locally, the cost of it – because each reagent will cost less when we develop locally. Overall, we have been able to bring down quality kit production significantly.
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India’s ramping up of COVID-19 testing capacity has enabled the country to conduct more than 580 million tests so far.
The price of RT-PCR tests has dropped to as little as $7 in some parts of the country, which is nearly ten times as much as when they were first made available.
It has poured $3.5 million into the partnership and Bhinge believes the increased availability of COVID-19 tests is now allowing the country to implement an aggressive surveillance program, which in turn has helped public health experts put in place careful measures to combat the pandemic.
“So the ability to diversify our production and our purchasing channels beyond a single source, you know, South Korea and China allows not only India, but also, you know, global countries, low- and middle-income countries in general, stability and security and access to medical technologies.” reasonable prices “.
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The second wave of COVID-19 peaked in May 2021 with more than 400,000 cases detected each day.
Bhinge believes the scale of the crisis could have been much worse without the testing capacity being greatly increased. Mumbai Makes RT-PCR Test Compulsory For Travelers Coming From These Countries, Issues New Guidelines As per the new guidelines, provision of institutional quarantine for international travelers Travel by air has been cancelled.
Mumbai civil authority Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has made RT-PCR tests mandatory for international travelers arriving at the city’s airport from September 3 after the detection of a new strain of coronavirus – C.1.2.
“The RT-PCR test is mandatory for international travelers arriving at Mumbai Airport from UK, Europe, Middle East, South Africa, Brazil, Bangladesh, Botswana, China, Mauritius, New Zealand and Zimbabwe upon arrival at the airport at their own expense, following the detection of a new strain of COVID-19 virus.”
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As per the new guidelines, the provision of institutional quarantine for international travelers traveling by air has been eliminated. However, some new guidelines have been introduced for international travelers.
Government sources told news agency ANI that the new variant of Covid C. 1.2, which was first reported in South Africa, has not been found in India yet.
Maria Van Kerkhove, the World Health Organization’s technical chief for Covid-19, said on Tuesday that the C. 1.2 variant has been found in at least six countries.
According to the World Health Organization, South African researchers first presented their findings on the C. 1.2 variant to the WHO’s Virus Evolution Working Group on July 21.
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The new variant was first reported in South Africa in May. The researchers describe the C.1.2 variant, which contains 40-59 more mutations than the original Wuhan virus. The research includes scientists from the National Institute of Communicable Diseases (NICD) and the KwaZulu-Natal Innovation and Research Sequencing Platform (KRISP). India News Updates Mumbai, Dec 2, 2021: Mumbai reports 228 new cases of Covid-19, one death; The Maharashtra government is revising its passenger air travel advisory
Mumbai News Updates, Dec 2, 2021: Mumbai records 228 new cases of Covid-19, 1 death; The Maharashtra government is revising its passenger air travel advisory
Mumbai Live News Updates 2nd December 2021: Mumbai has reported 228 new cases of coronavirus, bringing the total number to 76, 63, 217. The city recorded just one death in the last 24 hours, and the total death toll stands at 16,341. Meanwhile According to the Maharashtra government’s revised air travel guidelines, domestic passengers will either have to be fully vaccinated or compulsorily carry a RT-PCR test certificate showing a negative result within 72 hours before boarding. Also, institutional quarantine for seven days is mandatory for travelers arriving in Maharashtra from South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe as per the amended rules of the state government. Stay tuned for live updates.
Mumbai reported 228 new cases of coronavirus, taking the total number to 76, 63, 217. As per revised guidelines by the Maharashtra government, passengers will either have to be fully vaccinated or mandatorily carry an RT-PCR test certificate showing negative results. Inside. 72 hours before boarding, in the case of domestic air travel.
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In other news, the former Mumbai Police Commissioner Thane has been suspended and disciplinary proceedings have been opened against him for various lapses.
Mumbai reported 228 new cases of coronavirus, bringing the total number to 76, 63, 217. The city recorded just one death in the last 24 hours, with the total death toll standing at 16,341. And 216 patients have recovered and been discharged. In the last 24 hours and the number
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