NEW DELHI — India has begun randomly testing international passengers arriving at its airports for COVID-19, the nation’s well being minister mentioned Thursday, citing a rise in instances in neighboring China.
Mansukh Mandaviya introduced the brand new rule in Parliament, the place he additionally urged state governments to extend surveillance for any new coronavirus variants and ship samples of all optimistic instances to genome sequencing laboratories.
Mandaviya additionally requested the general public to put on masks and keep social distancing, although there are not any official mandates for both.
India relaxed its mask-wearing guidelines earlier this year after coronavirus instances started dropping sharply. It has reported probably the most COVID-19 instances on the earth because the pandemic started, however confirmed infections have fallen sharply prior to now few months.
According to well being ministry information, India at the moment has about 3,400 lively coronavirus instances.
Cases have surged in neighboring China because it relaxed its harsh restrictions earlier this month following uncommon public protests.
Mandaviya mentioned the Indian authorities has no plans but to halt flights from nations the place new instances have been reported.
On Thursday, India’s prime docs’ physique, the Indian Medical Association, additionally appealed to individuals to put on masks in all public locations and get vaccine boosters. It urged individuals to keep away from public gatherings resembling weddings, political and social conferences, and international journey.
“As of now, the situation is not alarming and therefore there is no need to panic. Prevention is better than cure,” it mentioned in an announcement.
India, a rustic of practically 1.4 billion individuals, has administered greater than 2.2 billion COVID-19 vaccine doses, however solely 27% of the inhabitants has acquired a 3rd booster dose.