Covid-19: Karnataka to trace 138 UK arrivals

Covid-19: Karnataka to trace 138 UK arrivals

Representative image. Credit: DH Photo/Pushkar V

The Karnataka government has decided to trace 138 passengers who arrived in the state from the United Kingdom with no negative Covid-19 certificate. They will be subjected to an RT-PCR test and if their samples test positive, genetic sequencing of the sample will be done at the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (Nimhans) lab, Health and Medical Education Minister Dr K Sudhakar told reporters here on Monday.

The state government has mandated 14-day home quarantine for travellers from the UK, Denmark and Netherlands, according to a circular from Jawaid Akhtar, Additional Chief Secretary, Health.

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However, Dr Sudhakar said it will be a seven -day quarantine.

Those who have arrived from these countries since December 7 will be traced within the next 24 hours and subjected to an RT-PCR test.

“In the UK, Denmark and Netherlands, a new strain of coronavirus belonging to a new family has been identified. It has more transmissibility than the existing strain of the virus.

“However, among those passengers who arrived in Karnataka from the UK on Sunday, 246 passengers arrived by Air India and 291 arrived via British Airways. They were all asymptomatic but 89 by Air India and 49 by British Airways came without being tested,” Sudhakar said.

“In all, 138 passengers without a negative Covid-19 report have arrived in Bengaluru. We have been trying to trace them. By the end of the day or latest by Tuesday, we will trace them via contacts obtained from the Ministry of Civil Aviation. They will be subjected to an RT-PCR test. They will be monitored via Apthamitra,” he added.

From Tuesday, special kiosks will be set up at the airport for passengers arriving from other countries. “Transit passengers arriving from the UK via Dubai, via flight carriers like Etihad Airways and Emirates from the United Arab Emirates, and via Qatar Airways, will be monitored and tested. They will be institutionally quarantined if symptomatic and test positive,” he said.

In a circular issued on Monday, Akhtar, said, “In view of the new variant of Covid-19 virus reported from the United Kingdom, the international airports at Bengaluru and Mangaluru are instructed to provide the list of passengers who arrived from the UK from December 7 onwards till date.”

“It is hereby instructed that for all flights arriving from today, RT-PCR testing must be done for all passengers originating from the UK, including those transiting in other airports outside the UK. Those who are RT-PCR positive shall be under hospital isolation and positive samples should be sent to Nimhans, Bengaluru, for molecular testing. Contact details of all such passengers should be informed to District Surveillance Officers for quarantine follow-up,” the circular
said.