Since January 2020, when the first case of COVID-19 was detected in India, the virus has infected numerous people. The number of positive cases in the country has kept oscillating in this duration. Following this, the Government of India has several times altered travel-related guidelines to ensure the safety of citizens. In its recent announcement, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) has announced to resume the Air Suvidha portal for International travellers flying from high-risk countries. This has been done in the wake of the rising number of COVID-19 cases in different parts of the world. Here is all you need to know about this decision.
In recent weeks, some countries like China have witnessed an unprecedented surge in the number of positive COVID-19 cases. Thus, to prevent the potential spillover into India, the Health Ministry has decided to resume the Air Suvidha portal from 1st January 2023.
In their recent announcement, the Union Home Ministy stated that flyers travelling from China, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea, and Thailand need to submit their RT-PCR test reports (conducted 72 hours before undertaking the journey) from 1st January 2023. Travellers from these nations should upload their reports on the Air Suvidha portal before flying. This latest requirement is in addition to the guideline that necessitates random post-arrival testing for 2% of the International flyers.
Air Suvidha is a self-declaration form meant to be filled out by international arrivals. Here, the air passengers self-declare their details like vaccination status, travel information of the last 14 days, recent RT-PCR test report, passport number, and Email ID. Submitting the Air Suvidha form will help prevent the spread of the virus by facilitating contract tracing.
As per the latest government advisory, effective 1st January 2023 (1000 hrs IST), all passengers arriving from countries identified as 'High Risk' will have to undergo a mandatory RT-PCR test (to be conducted 72 hrs before undertaking the journey). Passengers should upload a negative RT-PCR during self-declaration on the Air Suvidha portal and show it to the concerned airline before boarding.
As per the latest government advisory, the self-declaration form is not required to be filled by passengers arriving from non-high-risk countries. For further information, you should get in touch with the airline concerned.
Children under 12 years of age are exempted from both pre-departure and post-arrival RT-PCR testing. For any requirement by the airline, you are requested to get in touch with them.
According to the updated guidelines, passengers taking transit flights to India from high-risk countries also need to submit a negative RT-PCR report and fill out the Air Suvidha form.
International arriving passengers from high-risk countries to India need to fill out a Self-Declaration form on the Air Suvidha portal.