15 April 2024

India suspends all visas to contain coronavirus

Travel of OCI card-holders also affected

India has suspended all existing visas till April 15 in a bid to prevent spread of novel coronavirus.

Visa-free travel facility granted to OCI card holders is also kept in abeyance till April 15.

The suspension will come into effect from 1200 GMT on March 13 at the port of departure.

Diplomatic, official, UN/International organisations, employment and project visas, however, have been exempted from this suspension order, according to an official announcement.

India suspends all visas
Coronavirus has affected 60 people in India

The moves comes at a time when the World Health Organization declared the outbreak of the new coronavirus as a pandemic.

The Indian government has advised the incoming travellers, including Indian nationals, to avoid non-essential travel and told them that they can be quarantined for a minimum of 14 days on their arrival in India, according to reports.

“Indian nationals are strongly advised to avoid all non-essential travel abroad. On their return, they can be subjected to quarantine for a minimum of 14 days,” the statement said.

International traffic through land borders will be restricted to designated check posts with robust screening facilities.

Any foreign national who intends to travel to India for compelling reason may contact the nearest Indian Mission, the release said, adding that all incoming travellers, including Indian nationals, arriving from or having visited China, Italy, Iran, Republic of Korea, France, Spain and Germany after February 15 will be quarantined for a minimum period of 14 days. 

The number of novel coronavirus patients in the country on Wednesday rose to 60, with 10 more positive cases.

The coronavirus scare has forced closure of schools and colleges in parts of the country. Delhi has shut its primary schools till March 31.

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