15,000 Indians Stranded In 11 Nations Will Be Brought Back Via Flights, Ships: But It Won’t Be Free
Following the outbreak of Covid-19, the Union government has come up with a detailed plan to bring back Indians who continue to remain stranded abroad.
Who Will Get Benefited By This Plan?
Basically, the Centre’s efforts to rescue Indians who have been caught in other nations has continued over the last four months.
Further, the Centre has said that Indians who have “compelling grounds” to return,
The Union Home Ministry said, “The government of India is facilitating the return of Indian nationals stranded abroad on compelling grounds in a phased manner. The travel will be arranged by aircraft and naval ships,” while issuing a directive on Monday.
What Is The Plan?
Moreover, the MHA has drafted a standard operating procedure, it said that Indian embassies and high commissions are preparing a list of distressed Indians.
Although, the facility “would be made available on a payment basis. No scheduled commercial flights will be arranged for air travel”.
While talking about the procedure, the ministry stated that though all passengers will be screened before they board, only asymptomatic passengers will be allowed to travel.
Further, the home ministry added, “On reaching the destination everyone would have to register on the Aarogya Setu app. Everyone would be medically screened. After scrutiny, they would be quarantined for 14 days, either in a hospital or in institutional quarantine on payment basis,”.
In the meantime, the Centre has also instructed state governments to make arrangements for testing and quarantine facilities, across the country.
According to the flight plan, Indian citizens will be evacuated from the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the UK, Malaysia, the US, the Philippines, Bangladesh, Singapore, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and Oman in 64 scheduled flights in the first week.
Apart from this, the government has also kept four Indian Navy ships ready to be deployed in the first week and at least a dozen more and around 30 Indian Air Force (IAF) aircraft on standby for the mammoth rescue operation, according to officials aware of the development.
Currently, Indian missions around the world have been registering citizens who were stranded when COVID-19-related travel restrictions were put in place by India and other countries, and those who want to return because they have lost their jobs or to meet their families.
So fat, around 150,000 Indians have registered to return with the Indian missions in the UAE alone, with almost a quarter of them citing job losses as the reason for returning home.
All these passengers would have to follow the protocols, such as the health norms issued by the ministry of health and the ministry of civil aviation, during the journey.
Currently, India has suspended its domestic and international passenger flights till May 17 and there is no clear indication yet from the government on when they may resume.