Port Blair, May 23 : Fearing a third wave of COVID19 infection in Andaman and Nicobar Islands, the Union Territory Administration has framed strict Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) to be followed by all passengers, Airport Authority, Airlines Operators and other concerns. On March 26, 2020 in the first wave of Coronavirus, a total of 11 COVID19 positive patients were detected and since April 17 2020 in the second wave another 22 people were tested positive.
However, all these 33 cases have now been tested negative and the entire Andaman and Nicobar Islands now have been declared as green zones.
Local Administration fears that arrival of nearly 3600 stranded people from Mainland India in Andaman and after resumption of flight services, might lead to a third wave of infection for which necessary arrangements have already been done in Andaman. According to the new SOP, all airlines will have to share passenger manifest with the District Administration, South Andaman beforehand.
Thermal screening shall be done for all passengers by local health authorities. There are also provisions that all asymptomatic passengers who are residents of Port Blair and Ferrargunj Tehsils will be taken to their respective homes by buses that will be organised by the Transport Department and they will be placed under Home Quarantine for 14 days. However, all asymptomatic passengers who are residents of other Districts and remote Islands will be allowed to proceed to their place of residence by bus, ship and helicopter .
In case movement is not possible immediately, they will be given a choice of being placed under home quarantine with their relatives locally or paid institutional quarantine till transport is available. Meanwhile as per SOP all symptomatic passengers will be quarantined at the designated COVID care centres.
In addition to the flights commencing operation with effect from 25 May 2020, the Government of India has also given approval for transportation of stranded personnel by ships as sought for by the Andaman and Nicobar Administration. (UNI)