900 Indians evacuated, govt hones anti-corona action plan

900 Indians evacuated, govt hones anti-corona action plan

Periodical checkups. (Photo: IANS/DPRO)

New Delhi, March 12 (IANS) With 900 Indians evacuated from COVID-19-affected nations, India has intensified its efforts to protect its citizens against the deadly coronavirus. Apart from 900 Indians, the government has also rescued 48 other nationals of countries such as the Maldives, China and the US, the government said on Thursday. In a statement, the government said a high-level Group of Ministers has been formed to continuously monitor the situation and evaluate preparedness and formulate measures about containment of COVID-19 in the country. It was in a meeting of Group of Minister on Wednesday that the GoM decided to suspend all existing visas till April 15. The GoM also decided that visa-free travel facility granted to OCI card holders will be kept in abeyance till April 15. The government also echoed its earlier decision of a compulsory COVID-19 free certificate for travellers from Italy and the Republic of Korea. The government added that all incoming travellers, including Indian nationals, arriving from or having visited China, Italy, Iran, Republic of Korea, France, Spain and Germany after February 15 will be quarantined for a minimum period of 14 days. The decision will come into effect from March 13 at the port of departure. The government will also restrict international traffic influx to the country through land borders. "International traffic through land borders will be restricted to designated check posts with robust screening facilities. These will be notified separately by M/o Home Affairs," a statement by the government said. Apart from these, all international passengers entering India are also required to furnish duly filled self-declaration forms in duplicate to health and immigration officials and undergo Universal Health Screening at the designated health counters at all points of entry, ther government said. According to the Health Ministry, the Prime Minister is reviewing the situation with the top officials since the first case was declared on December 31, 2019 in Wuhan, China. The Group of Ministers (GoM), set up to monitor the preparedness to fight coronavirus, has met six times, it said. Of the 73 coronavirus cases in India, 17 are foreigners.

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