Travelling to Odisha by bus, train, flight or car? COVID-19 negative RT-PCR report is mandatory for entry

By: |
April 08, 2021 10:28 PM

Odisha government Thursday made it mandatory for people coming to the state by train, bus, aeroplane, waterways or in private vehicles to produce RT-PCR negative report obtained within 72 hours of the entry

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Considering resurgence in COVID cases, the Odisha government Thursday made it mandatory for people coming to the state by train, bus, aeroplane, waterways or in private vehicles to produce RT-PCR negative report obtained within 72 hours of the entry or the final vaccination certificate. This was part of the state governments fresh guideline issued by the Chief Secretary following a spike in COVID-l9 positive cases in some districts. “The people coming without such a report shall have to undergo 7-day mandatory Home/ Institutional quarantine. This will be effective from April 12 (Monday),” Special Relief Commissioner P K Jena said quoting the order.

The order said district magistrates-cum-collectors of Sundargarh, Jharsuguda, Sambalpur, Bargarh, Balangir, Nuapada, Kalahandi, Nawrangpur, Koraput, Malkangiri, Ganjam, Gajapati, Rayagada, Keonjhar, Mayurbhanj and Balasore are authorised to set up and operationalise temporary medical centres/ cluster temporary medical centres as per need for giving institutional quarantine facilities to those coming from other states. Expenditure for opening and running of such facilities shall be borne by Chief Minister’s Relief Fund (CMRF), the order said.

This apart, the government also suspended all public transport from Odisha to Chhattisgarh and vice versa from April 10 till April 30, 2021. Transport Commissioner, Odisha shall issue appropriate orders and the department with the help of state police and under active guidance of district collectors, will set up border check points (BCPs) at strategic locations/ border entry points to manage entry of incoming persons/ vehicles. Persons coming through the BCPs will have to produce final vaccination certificate/ RT-PCR negative report obtained within 72 Hours prior to the entry to Odisha or else they will be put in home/ institutional quarantine for 7 days, he said. This apart, the incoming persons shall have to give an undertaking to this effect and submit form containing name of the person, from where they are coming, the address of destination, mobile number and alternate contact number.

All industries/ educational institutions/ commercial establishments will ensure implementation of all COVID appropriate behaviour/ protocols and set up their own isolation facilities like COVID Care Centres (CCCs)/ COVID Care Homes (CCHs) for COVID positive persons found in their Establishments. All such institutions will identify COVID compliance officers among their senior staff, who shall ensure the implementation of COVID compliance guidelines/ protocols within their premises and submit daily reports to the collector/ municipal commissioner.

If any violation is observed in complying with the COVID- 19 appropriate behavior and protocols, they will be liable to be proceeded against in accordance with the provisions of section 51 to 60 of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, Epidemic Diseases Act,1897 and Regulations issued besides legal action under sections of the IPC and other legal provisions as applicable, the order said. All collectors/ municipal commissioners will have regular meetings with the industries/educational institutions/ commercial establishments within their jurisdiction to sensitize them to follow COVID appropriate behavior. They have to also ensure strict adherence of COVID safety protocols such as wearing of masks, maintaining social distancing and provision of thermal scanning & use of hand wash or sanitiser.

All collectors/ superintendents of police/ all municipal commissioners/ commissioner of police, Bhubaneswar- Cuttack are also directed to ensure the implementation of this guideline. “Any person found violating this order shall be punished under the provisions of the Disaster Management Act, 2005 and other relevant laws,” the order said. Meanwhile, the Odisha government Thursday requested Railways to cancel all passenger trains coming from Chhattisgarh to Odisha from April 10 until further advice. Chief Secretary SC Mahapatra in a letter to Railway Board Chairman Suneet Sharma, stated that passenger trains including local and mail/express, coming from Chhattisgarh to Odisha may be cancelled with effect from April 10, 2021, till further advice.

The Odisha chief secretary also stated that railways must ensure that all passengers travelling to Odisha, from anywhere by train, must have an RT-PCR negative test report of maximum 72 hours before the start of journey or a second dose vaccination certificate. This restriction will come into force from the boarding date of April 10. Though the coronavirus situation is not alarming in Odisha, the chief secretary said the cross border movements of people are impacting COVID situation adversely in almost all the border districts of Odisha. He pointed out that there has been spike in cases in the states like Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattishgarh, Punjab and Andhra Pradesh and others

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