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Tuesday, May 18, 2021

At Delhi airport, random Covid testing throws up positivity rate of 2.6%

Officials say 236 of 8,986 people have tested positive since March 31.

Written by Ashna Butani | New Delhi |
April 12, 2021 10:41:36 pm
Other airlines based in the UAE, such as Etihad, FlyDubai, and Air Arabia, are also learnt to have cancelled their flights from India.

Since random testing began at the Delhi airport on March 31, as many as 236 people have tested positive, according to government data. So far, the results of 8,986 tests have come out. This translates to a positivity rate of 2.63 per cent. Results for RT-PCR tests done since April 9 are still pending.

Officials said the tests have been conducted at random for people from all states, but particularly from states where Covid cases are on the rise. The tests are being conducted at arrival halls by enforcement teams working under the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA). A government official said, “On a daily basis, 900-1,000 people are being tested inside the airport.”

The DDMA guidelines state, “Those passengers who are found positive shall be mandatorily quarantined/isolated at their place of stay or CCC/CHG/Hospital, as the case may be, for 10 days as per the prescribed protocol of Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, GOI.”

Under the new guidelines, people from Maharashtra require a negative RT-PCR test report or have to undergo mandatory quarantine for 14 days. An official said, “Since many are coming from Maharashtra and did not know about the new guidelines, we are mostly testing travellers from the state for the time being.”

Meanwhile, other measures were stepped up inside the airport on April 2 including imposing a fine of Rs 2,000 for violating Covid guidelines. Till April 12, 687 challans have been issued inside the airport – 556 in Terminal 3 and 131 in Terminal 2. A total of 63 challans were issued on Sunday.

Officials said the fines are being imposed for not wearing masks or maintaining social distancing – a majority of the fines are imposed for the latter. At present, eight enforcement teams have been deployed inside the airport for the purpose.

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