No move to suspend flights from India

By Vyshnavy Velrajh

No decision has been taken to suspend flights from India over fears of the new strain of COVID-19, Army Commander General Shavendra Silva said.

The Head of the National Operations Centre for the Prevention of COVID-19 said despite reports of a new strain of the virus being detected in India and Singapore, a decision has not been taken to suspend flights from the two countries as yet.

Stating that the new variant of the virus had emerged in the two countries through the United Kingdom (UK), he said it had not originated in India and Singapore and not many people have been infected at present.

General Shavendra Silva said Sri Lanka currently is receiving less flights from India and Singapore, while a majority of the flights are from the Middle East.

He further said that depending on future developments necessary precautions will be looked into and implemented as required.

The Government banned flights from the UK this month and prohibited passengers from the country transiting in Sri Lanka after it was reported that a new variant of the coronavirus had emerged in the UK and Europe.

It was later reported that six persons who had returned to India from the UK had tested positive for the new, more infectious strain of COVID-19.

Health authorities in Singapore had also detected patients with the new variant of the virus in the past few weeks.

With Sri Lanka having opened its borders for tourism from yesterday under a pilot project, Army Commander General Shavendra Silva said precautionary measures with regard to the new strain will be taken as required in the future. (Colombo Gazette)