Coronavirus Pandemic

Quarantine exemption for India-bound travellers clarified

Dhanusha Gokulan (Principal Correspondent)/Dubai Filed on November 7, 2020

(KT file)

A diplomat with the Indian mission in Dubai has explained.

India-bound travellers can be exempted from institutional quarantine upon arrival as long as they provide a ‘printable’ negative RT-PCR report and have registered online, a diplomat with the Indian mission in Dubai has clarified.

Instead, the passengers are required to undergo 14 days of home quarantine or ‘self-monitoring of health’, as warranted, according to the guidelines issued by the Indian Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on November 5.

Neeraj Agarwal, Consul for Press, Information and Culture at the Consulate-General of India in Dubai, explained: “It is safe to say that India-bound passengers are now not required to undergo institutional quarantine if they have a printable Covid-19 negative test report.”

He stressed that the test certificate must be in hard copy. “SMS reports, like those usually provided by some testing bodies in the UAE, are not widely accepted in India.”

Passengers must also register on the portal and provide airport authorities with a registration reference number to be exempted from institutional quarantine, Agarwal explained.

International passengers can also upload the self-declaration form and their Covid-19 test report online or submit it to the airport authorities upon arrival.

The ministry has stipulated that all passengers seeking exemption from institutional quarantine shall ‘self-monitor’ for symptoms. Though the ministry has not specified what the exact terms of ‘self-monitoring’ are, it is understood that he or she must visit a local health facility in case they show any symptoms of Covid-19.

Those will submit a negative test report for quarantine exemption must ensure that the test had be taken at least 72 hours before the scheduled travel, according to the guidelines. “Here, the testing time has been reduced from 96 hours to 72 hours,” Agarwal added.

State rules apply

Agarwal emphasised that “while the fresh regulations has been issued by the Central (Federal) government, passengers are still subject to quarantine regulations set by the state government”.

The regulations issued by the central ministry also says that the exemption is given to those with compelling reasons such as as pregnancy, death in family, serious illness and parents with children of the age of ten years or below. However, all passengers are welcome to apply.


Dhanusha Gokulan

Originally from India, Dhanusha Gokulan has been working as a journalist for 10 years. She has a keen interest in writing about issues that plague the common person and will never turn down a human interest story. She completed her Bachelor in Arts in Journalism, Economics and English Literature from Mangalore University in 2008. In her spare time, she dabbles with some singing/songwriting, loves travelling and Audible is her favourite mobile application. Tweet at her @wordjunkie88

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