A government body dealing with the pandemic said the monthlong travel restrictions would start from Saturday and aim to prevent the spread into the country of coronavirus strains from other countries which are believed to be more contagious.
"It is not just a mission that brought back stranded and distressed citizens from around the world, but Vande Bharat has been a mission of hope and happiness, of letting people know that they will not be left behind even in the most testing times," Puri said.
Victorya Matevossian disclosed that Dubai is one of the safest destinations for travellers in world, adding that around 70% of Armenian tourists have travelled to the ‘City of Wonders’ during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The latest phase of these repatriation flights, known as the "Vande Bharat Mission," began on March 1 and will last till March 28. Slightly more than 1,350 international flights are scheduled to be operated from 28 countries in this phase, enabling an estimated 260,000 Indians to travel home.
During lockdown in 2020, SereneAir was the only Pakistan registered air carrier that not only operated to its capacity but also flew special charter flights to Dhaka, Kabul, Nanjing and UAE carrying personal protection equipment for the COVID-19 and stranded overseas Pakistani from the UAE.
All arrivals to the UK will have to quarantine and show negative tests for COVID-19 from Monday, after the government scrapped "travel corridors" from countries with lower caseloads following the emergence of new strains.
Taking in view the emergence of new mutant strains of novel coronavirus in many countries, the Centre has drafted a fresh set of rules to guide international travellers arriving India Feb.23 onwards.
Amid concerns related to the production and delivery of COVID-19 vaccines, the European Commission urged EU nations to reinforce testing and quarantine measures for travellers as virus mutations that are more transmissible threaten to overwhelm the hospitals with new cases.
India suspended all incoming and outgoing international flights as well as domestic air travel in the last week of March 2020 as part of a lockdown to combat COVID-19. Flights to and from India have since been resumed in a phased manner with about two-dozen countries under "air bubbles."
The ban on gatherings include international conferences, sports events and exhibitions, state news agency ONA said, citing a decision by the Gulf state's coronavirus emergency committee. Oman closed its land borders ten days ago.