Random COVID-19 tests to be conducted at Delhi airport

Passengers who are found to be positive for coronavirus shall be mandatorily quarantined.
A health worker in a PPE suit collecting nasal swab sa,ple from a woman for coronavirus test
A health worker in a PPE suit collecting nasal swab sa,ple from a woman for coronavirus test
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Random RT-PCR tests will be conducted on passengers arriving at New Delhi airport from states that have been reporting a high number of COVID-19 cases. Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA), the Delhi airport's operator DIAL on Wednesday, made this announcement on Twitter. The Centre had on Tuesday said the COVID-19 situation is turning from "bad to worse" and is a huge cause for worry, especially for some states, warning that the whole country is at risk and any complacency at this stage will have "heavy costs".

The Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL) stated on Twitter on Wednesday, "As per the latest government mandate, DDMA shall conduct random COVID-19 testing of passengers coming from the states where cases are increasing."

"After the collection of samples, the travellers would be allowed to exit. However, the passengers who were found to be positive shall be mandatorily quarantined as per the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare protocol," it added.

Six states, including Maharashtra, Punjab, Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh, have reported a high number of daily COVID-19 cases and account for 78.56 per cent of the 56,211 fresh cases recorded in the country in a day, the Union Health Ministry had said on Tuesday.

Delhi reported 992 coronavirus cases on Tuesday with a positivity rate of 2.70 per cent, while four more persons succumbed to the pathogen, the health department said. Officials said the low number of cases can be attributed to less tests conducted on Monday on account of Holi. The city had recorded 1,904 cases on Monday, the highest in around three-and-a-half months.

The Union government on Wednesday asked states and union territories to identify low vaccine-coverage pockets, particularly in districts reporting a surge in new infections, and take corrective action.

National Health Authority (NHA) CEO and Empowered Group on COVID Vaccination chairperson Dr R S Sharma and Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan chaired a high-level meeting with health secretaries, mission directors of NHM and immunisation officers of all states and UTs during the day, a statement said.

The status and pace of the inoculation drive across the country were reviewed at the meeting held through video-conferencing, as were the preparations for April 2021, when vaccination would be extended to cover everybody above the age of 45, the ministry said.

(With PTI inputs)

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