Saudi Arabia cancels travel to and from India as COVID-19 cases rise, Saudi Arabia


Saudi Arabia cancels travel to and from India as COVID-19 cases rise

In a major development, Saudi Arabia suspended all flights to and from India, due to a spike in Coronavirus cases in the country. Besides India, it has also canceled air travel to and from Brazil and Argentina too for the same reason. Not only this, the government has also barred people with travel history to any of the mentioned countries 14 days prior to their arrival in Saudi Arabia.

The General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) of Saudi Arabia said, “Suspending travel to and from the following countries (India, Brazil, and Argentina) including any person who has been in any of the mentioned countries in the last (14) days prior to their arrival to the Kingdom.”

But if a person has official government invitations, he/she can enter the country.

The GACA circular with title Suspension of travel to countries where the COVID-19 virus has outbreak, was sent to all the airlines and chartered flight operators at the Saudi Arabia’s airports.

Just a few days back, Dubai Civil Aviation Authority (DCAA) had suspended Air India’s flights for 24 hours for flying two COVID-positive passengers on August 28 and September 4. The flights resumed after a day of suspension. The UAE government has made it mandatory for passengers travelling from India to carry an original COVID-negative certificate of an RT-PCR test taken within 96 hours (before the journey).All the international flights in India were grounded on March 23 due to the virus outbreak. Later, Indian government had arranged for special international flights between India and Saudi Arabia that have been operational since May 6 under the Vande Bharat mission.

Given Saudi Arabia and the UAE has a huge number of Indian migrants, this comes as a big decision. Meanwhile India is experiencing a surge in COVID-19 positive cases almost every other day; as of now, there are 5.3 million plus cases in the country.

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