New Delhi, Nov 15 (IANS) India on Monday decided to reopen the entry of all foreign tourists following a sharp and sustained decline in Covid-19 cases.
According to the officials, now the foreign travelers will be allowed to visit India without a mandatory quarantine. The government's move came 20 months after the pandemic situation improved in the country.
India has now allowed entry to fully inoculated tourists from 99 countries including the UK, USA, Israel, Brazil, Canada, Greece, Kuwait, Colombia, Russia and Germany, who have already recognized the Indian vaccination certificates or WHO-recognised vaccinated Indian travelers in their countries.
The government only requires that such tourists monitor their health for 14 days after their arrival in India.
In case of a foreigner who has taken only one shot, will have to go for RT-PCR test at the airports or any entry points in India and will have to go for seven days self home quarantine stay in case of a positive report and on the 8th day, the RT-PCR test will be done again and then they can walk free in the country.
In case a person is found positive in the second RT-PCR test, he will have to stay in home quarantine for another eight days.
Earlier, the Indian authorities had allowed foreign tourists through chartered flights and they had to go for 14 days home mandatory quarantine but now that restrictions have been eased off.
In March 2020 the government suspended visas of all foreign nationals as the Covid-19 pandemic was on a steep hike. In December 2020, the government launched an 'air bubble' or 'air corridor' scheme with 19 countries such as USA, UK, France, Germany, Canada, the Maldives, UAE, Qatar, Bahrain, Nigeria, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Japan so that the stranded passengers in India can leave to their countries and the Indians who were stuck in these countries might return to India.
The Indian authorities allowed the Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) and OCI (Overseas Citizens of India) cardholders to visit here.