UK adds India to travel red list amid surge in Covid cases

NEW DELHI: The United Kingdom on Monday added India to its travel ‘red list’ amid an unrelenting surge in coronavirus cases in the country.
The decision comes after Britain detected 103 cases of a coronavirus variant first identified in India.
As per the new rules, all arrivals from India have been banned.

However, UK and Irish residents who have been in India in the past 10 days are required to mandatorily stay in a government-approved quarantine hotel for 10 days on their return to UK.
The rules come into force from April 24.
“We’ve made the difficult but vital decision to add India to the Red List. This means anyone who is not a UK or Irish resident or a British citizen cannot enter the UK if they’ve been in India in the previous 10 days,” Britain health minister Matt Hancock told their parliament.

Confirming the move in House of Commons, Hancock said that the cases of Indian variant identified in Britain has been majorly due to international travels.
He said that samples of that variant have been analysed to see if the new variant has any “concerning characteristics”, such as greater transmissibility or resistance to treatments and vaccines.
“After studying the data, and on a precautionary basis, we’ve made the difficult but vital decision to add India to the red list,” the minister told MPs.
Earlier in the day, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson called off his trip to India for the second time amid a massive surge in Covid cases in the country.
(With inputs from agencies)