Passengers arriving to India from countries like UK, South Africa, Dubai are seen landing at the international airports in Bengaluru, Mangalore and Goa and then taking domestic flights or continuing their journey by road to their state.
Recently The Ministry of Civil Aviation has issued new guidelines for international travellers due to the spread of new and different variants of the coronavirus. All international flyers arriving from United Kingdom, South Africa, Middle East and Europe are required to undertake 14 days of mandatory institutional quarantine upon arrival at their own cost.
Travellers will be kept under institutional quarantine and the RT-PCR test will be conducted on the 7th day from arrival at their own cost. If they test negative, passengers will be allowed to carry on with seven days of home quarantine. A home quarantine stamp will be put and an undertaking will be taken from travellers.
So to bypass this process many passengers have opted to try alternate routes to get back home. While passengers from Dubai and other Middle-Eastern cities are finding it convenient to land at Mangalore International Airport, those from UK, South Africa and Europe are landing in Bengaluru International Airport and then taking domestic flights to Mumbai and other airports in Maharashtra.
A passenger who landed in Mangalore from Dubai on Monday to visit his hospitalised relative in Mumbai, said he had to opt for the ‘short cut’ as he could not afford to undergo 14 days of quarantine both in terms of money and time. “Fourteen days of quarantine costs around Rs 15,000. Moreover who has the time for it? I have come to visit my relative and want to get back as soon as possible. After landing in Mangalore, I took a cab to Mumbai,” he said.
Speaking of this matter, a Mangalore International Airport official said they were unaware of passengers landing at the airport as a method to skip the quarantine measures because they do not check the final destination of passengers. “Even if their final destination is Maharashtra, we cannot stop them as institutional quarantine is not mandatory here for all international passengers,” he said.