The government of India had announced a temporary ban on flights coming from the UK commencing from 11.59 p.m. on December 22, in wake of a new fast-spreading mutated strain of coronavirus which had gripped the island nation and had gone into lockdown mode since.
The official said that nearly all the 979 passengers, who had arrived in Goa in the days before the flight ban came into place, were NRIs returning to their native homes in the coastal state for Christmas festivities.
Chief Minister Pramod Sawant said the Goa government was awaiting test reports from the Pune-based Central government facility, for possible presence of the new coronavirus strain in the samples drawn from the UK returnees who had tested positive for Covid-19 in RT-PCR tests.
"In the meantime, we have decided to keep them in institutional isolation. Barring the condition of one person, the condition of the others is well," Sawant said.
According to Nilesh Shah president of the Travel and Tourism Association of Goa, the ban on flights from the UK was a setback to the industry, but added that the manner in which the Goa government went about with locating the passengers and contact tracing efforts made were worth appreciation.
"Overall, the situation has been handled well. The passengers returning from the UK have been identified and tested sending a good signal," Shah told IANS.
Goa currently has 955 active Covid-19 cases, while 734 persons have died in the state after testing positive. In all, 50,772 Covid-19 cases have been reported in the state.
(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
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