No entry in Maharashtra without clearing Covid-19 test done within 72 hours of flight

Passengers from Delhi, Rajasthan, Goa and Gujarat have been included in the ambit of the new rules

No entry in Maharashtra without clearing Covid-19 test done within 72 hours of flight
Thermal scanners at the Delhi airport. Image courtesy: Twitter/ @DelhiAirport

If you are flying to Maharashtra from Delhi, Rajasthan, Goa and Gujarat, it is mandatory to carry a negative RT-PCR report before boarding a flight. This drastic decision by the Maharashtra government came on November 23 with new guidelines for the air passengers.
 
“The RT-PCR sample collection should have been done within 72 hours of the scheduled time of landing at airports in Maharashtra,” the 'Mission Begin Again' notification read.

Domestic passengers without such reports would have to undergo a compulsory RT-PCR test at the concerned airports. The cost of the test should be borne by the passengers. Only after undertaking the test can a passenger be allowed by the airport operator to leave.

  

These new standard operating procedures (SOPs) are not limited to air travellers but even to those travelling by train or road will have to produce these certificates.

Also read: India begins Covid-19 testing at airport for incoming passengers

Delhi, Rajasthan Goa and Gujarat have seen a sharp rise in Covid-19 cases in the past. Due to the rising number of cases, the Maharashtra government has changed the travel rule. “The Airports Authority of India (AAI) is requested to check for the report before allowing the passengers to board the flight,” the government notification said.

The Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (CSMIA) in Mumbai had launched an RT-PCR test facility on September 6 for incoming international passengers, who plan to travel on an onward domestic flight. It was then extended to domestic passengers arriving at the CSMIA. It was further extended to cover passengers departing from the airport and their family members, who come to see them off.

Full details of new guidelines:

Domestic air travel

1) All domestic passengers travelling from airports in NCR of Delhi, Rajasthan, Gujarat and Goa shall carry RT-PCR negative test report with them before boarding and show it to the teams at the arrival airport. The Airports Authority of India is requested to check for the report before allowing the passengers to board the flight.

2) The RT-PCR sample collection should have been done within 72 hours of the scheduled time of landing at airports in Maharashtra.

Also read: Covid-19 busted your vacation? Here's how safe air travel in India is at the moment

3) Passengers NOT having the RT-PCR test reports fulfilling conditions above in 1 and 2, shall compulsorily undergo RT-PCR test at the concerned airports, at their own cost. The airport shall arrange the testing centres and charge the passengers directly for testing.

4) Only after undertaking the test, the passengers will be allowed to go home by the airport operator. The contact information and address shall be collected from all passengers who undergo tests at the airport by airport operator to facilitate contact, in case the test report comes positive.

5) Passengers whose report comes positive will be contacted and treated as per the existing protocol.

6) The concerned municipal commissioners will be the nodal officers for the same and ensure that the above instructions are followed strictly.