British nationals arriving in India, irrespective of their vaccination status, will have to undergo 10 days of mandatory quarantine from Monday, October 4 as part of the reciprocal actions initiated by the government following the vaccine certification row between the two countries. India has decided to impose reciprocal actions on British nationals arriving in India, official sources said as the issue relating to the UK not recognising Indian vaccine certificates could not be resolved. They said India's new regulations will come into effect from October 4 and they will be applicable to all British nationals arriving in India from the UK.
Under the norms, all British nationals arriving in India from the UK, irrespective of their vaccination status, will also have to undertake the pre-departure COVID-19 RT-PCR test within 72 hours before travel, the sources said. They will also have to undertake an RT-PCR test on arrival. Following this, on day 8 of their arrival in India, the British nationals will be required to take a COVID-19 test again on Day 8 of their quarantine. The mandatory quarantine must be completed at home or at the destination address for 10 days after arrival, the sources said.
Earlier, the UK governmentâ€™s decision to make quarantine mandatory for travellers vaccinated with Covishield had caused an outcry among Indians. According to the rule, those vaccinated with the Serum Institute of India-produced Covishield would be considered unvaccinated by the UK government. On September 21, Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla described the policy as "discriminatory". "The basic issue is that here is a vaccine, Covishield, which is a licensed product of the UK company, manufactured in India of which we have supplied five million doses to the UK at the request of the government of the UK. We understand that this is being used under the national health system, and, therefore, non-recognition of Covishield is a discriminatory policy and does impact those of our citizens travelling to the UK," Shringla had said.
Two days later, the UK government said that there was no problem with the Covishield vaccine and suggested the main issue is COVID-19 vaccine certification done through the CoWIN app, noting that both sides are having discussions at a rapid pace to resolve it. Following India's strong criticism over the UK's refusal to recognise Covishield, UK amended its new guidelines to include the Indian-made version of the AstraZeneca vaccine in its updated international travel advisory.