Govt Issues New Rules for Incoming International Passengers

The self-declaration forms for COVID vaccination that had to be filled in by incoming international passengers on the Air Suvidha portal will no longer be necessary
International Passengers
International Passengers

The government on Tuesday said that the self-declaration forms for COVID vaccination that had to be filled in by incoming international passengers on the Air Suvidha portal will no longer be necessary. The decision will come into effect from midnight.

A notice from the Civil Aviation ministry read, "In the light of sustained declining COVID-19 trajectory and significant advances being made in COVID-19 vaccination coverage both globally as well as in India, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare has issued revised 'Guidelines for International Arrivals".

Under the revised guidelines of the health ministry, the submission of self-declaration form on the online Air Suvidha portal stand discontinued, the aviation ministry said. It, however, added a statutory warning: The rule could be reviewed if needed in view of the Covid situation.

The form on the aviation ministry's Air Suvidha portal was mandatory for incoming international passengers. In it, passengers had to declare their vaccination status, including the number of doses received and their dates.

This was in line with the rules in most nations.

The ministry, however, said it was preferred that the passengers be fully vaccinated. It was also preferable that all precautionary measures for Covid -- including the use of masks and social distancing at airports -- be continued, a NDTV report said.

Last week, the aviation ministry had said the use of masks was no longer compulsory during air travel, but passengers should use them to prevent another surge of coronavirus.

Till then, the use of masks in flights was mandatory.

The ministry said the decision was taken in line with the government's policy of a graded approach to Covid-19 management.

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