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Coronavirus: Contingency plan envisages closure of movement at Kartarpur, Wagah

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New Delhi, March 4, 2020-

Among the steps being considered in the contingency planning for coronavirus is the closure of movement at border points with Pakistan.

The Centre has prepared a step by step approach in an evolving situation with Covid-19 cases being reported in India.

Among the issues that have been flagged for consideration is closure of movement at the borders and testing of passengers from Iran. They also include closing of movement at Kartarpur and Wagah borders flagged by Ministry of Home Affairs.

The plan envisages that the Bureau of Immigration to provide usable data by providing Indian addresses and phone numbers of passengers.

The other steps include testing and quarantine of passengers from Iran. An Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) representative has reached Iran along with reagents to support Indian Ambassador in Iran for tie ups on testing.

Among the Health Ministry initiatives is that necessary coordination has also been tied up with WHO, Iran office for Indian Embassy in Iran.

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The Ministry of External Affairs will brief on the tie up being done for testing of passengers before departing from Iran.

The Health Ministry has flagged that a decision has to be taken with respect to locations and numbers for quarantine for evacuees from Iran.

The contingency plan has been discussed at the highest levels within the government and the Cabinet meeting held on Wednesday is also learnt to have discussed the matter.

In supersession of all earlier advisories , the latest Travel Advisory mentions that all regular/eVisas/ issued to nationals of Italy, Iran, South Korea and Japan issued on or before March 3, 2020 and who have not yet entered India, stand suspended with immediate effect.

Regular/eVisa issued to nationals of Peoples Republic of China issued on or before February 5, 2020 were suspended earlier, which shall remain in force.

Those requiring to travel to India due to compelling reasons, may seek fresh visa from nearest Indian Embassy/Consulate.

Regular/eVisas issued to all other foreign nationals who have travelled to Peoples Republic of China, Iran, Italy, South Korea and Japan, on or after February 1, and who have not yet entered India, stand suspended with immediate effect.

All foreign and Indian nationals entering into India from any port, are required to furnish duly filled self declaration form including personal particulars and travel history to Health officials and Immigration officials at all ports.

Passengers (foreign and Indian) arriving directly or indirectly from China, South Korea, Japan, Iran, Italy, Hongkong, Macau, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, Nepal, Thailand, Singapore must undergo medical screening at port of entry.  (Agency)

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