New Strain of Coronavirus: Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri signals extension of temporary suspension on India-UK flights

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Updated: Dec 29, 2020 4:08 PM

Puri said that the picture will be clearer in a couple of days and the government would be in a position to know whether it needs to take any additional steps.

India-UK flights newsIndia-UK flights to resume.

Travellers take note, extension of temporary suspension on India-UK flights likely! Union Minister of Civil Aviation Hardeep Singh Puri has said that the suspension of international flights between India and the United Kingdom could be extended for a long haul in the wake of the emergence of a new strain of Coronavirus in the UK. According to a PTI report Puri was quoted as saying that he foresees slight extension of the temporary suspension of the India-UK flights. Earlier, the government had temporarily banned the movement of international flights between Britain and India till December 31. However, Puri did not mention how long the ban would be extended for.

However, Puri said that the picture will be clearer in a couple of days and the government would be in a position to know whether it needs to take any additional steps. He further said that the government will only think about easing the suspension of flights after it gets additional information in the next few days.

Following the lead of other European countries which had banned the movement to and from the United Kingdom, the Indian government had temporarily banned international travel between the United Kingdom and India. In a decision taken on December 22, the government had banned the international flights between the UK and India till December 31.

The new strain of virus named VUI 202012/01 which was first traced in the United Kingdom has been found to be more infectious than its other variants. The virus which carries as many as 14 new mutations and three deletions has been traced in more than 60 percent of the cases recently reported in the capital city of London. In addition to the danger of faster spread of Coronavirus, health experts and scientists have also warned that there is slight probability that the new strain might affect the testing capabilities as well as vaccine development of the virus.

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