Two South African nationals have tested Covid-19 positive at the Kempegowda International Airport in Bengaluru on Saturday, creating panic among the health authorities over the new Omicron variant of the lethal virus.
Bengaluru Rural Deputy Commissioner K. Srinivas on Saturday said further test reports would ascertain whether the South African nationals are infected with the Omicron variant.
The test results will take another 48 hours to arrive, the Health Department said.
Both have been sent to quarantine centres, and they will stay there till their test results confirm about the new variant.
Srinivas said that as many as 584 people, so far, have arrived in Bengaluru from 10 “high-risk” nations, and as many as 94 individuals have come from South Africa alone so far.
He also visited the Bengaluru airport to inspect the security and precautionary measures being undertaken by the authorities regarding examining the international passengers who arrive from high-risk countries where the Omicron variant has been detected.
Meanwhile, highlighting the need for monitoring all international arrivals in the view of the new Covid variant Omicron, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday asked officials to review plans for easing international travel restrictions in light of the emerging new evidence.
PM Modi was briefed about the Covid-19 situation across the world, including the new Variant of Concern ‘Omicron’ along with its characteristics and the impact seen in various countries.
Amid rising concern about a new COVID-19 variant ‘Omicron’ first detected in South Africa, India also added several countries to the list from where travellers would need to follow additional measures on arrival in India, including post-arrival testing for infection.
Countries from where the travellers would need to follow additional measures on arrival in India are South Africa, Brazil, Bangladesh Botswana, China, Mauritius, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, Singapore, Israel, Hong Kong, countries in Europe including the UK.