After seeing a sudden rise in the number of COVID cases in the state, Government of West Bengal has announced a ban on all international direct flights coming from the United Kingdom to Kolkata from January 3.

The suspension will remain in force till further orders. West Bengal government also issued an order, stating that all international passengers will have to undergo a mandatory COVID-19 test on arrival at the airport.

All travellers coming from 'at risk' countries already have to take the said test on arrival at other Indian airports, even those coming from 'not at risk' countries will have to arrive in Kolkata at their own cost But will have to mandatorily pass a test at destination airport.

Airlines will randomly select 10% of passengers for RT-PCR test, while another 90% will have to undergo rapid antigen test at the arrival airport, as per the new directive issued by the government for international passengers.

It is found that most omicron cases are traced to people arriving on flights from the United Kingdom. The West Bengal official requested that the Center should decide to ban flights from countries where the cases of omicrons are high.

COVID-19 situation in West Bengal suddenly worsened, while Kolkata has emerged as one of the districts of concern. Reportedly, Kolkata reported 540 new COVID cases on Wednesday, while the state registered a total of 1089 cases.


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