For the second time in two days, the majority of air passengers arriving in India from Italy have tested positive for Covid, according to Indian officials. On Friday’s Rome to Amritsar flight, 173 out of 285 passengers tested positive on arrival.
On Friday, 173 out of 285 passengers aboard the flight from Rome to Amritsar tested positive on arrival. This follows a Wednesday flight from Milan to Amritsar when more than a hundred passengers tested positive on arrival.
Covid cases in Italy and India on the rise
On Thursday, cases in Italy reached a new record of nearly 220,000.
India reported more than 100,000 cases on Friday. Experts believe Omicron is causing the sharp jump in infections there.
Amritsar is in Punjab, a state which brought back restrictions to curb the rise in Covid-19 infections. The day before the first mass-infected flight landed, the state imposed a temporary night curfew and shut educational establishments.
Italy has also introduced new restrictions, including mandatory vaccination for the over 50s.
To date, India has recorded over 35 million Covid cases and around 483,000 virus-related deaths.
Institutional quarantine for Italian arrivals
The Covid-infected passengers who arrived from Rome were sent for institutional quarantine in their home districts, local health officials said.
The infected passengers from the Milan flight two days earlier went to hospital. However, at least 13 people on the Milan flight managed to escape quarantine. The BBC reported that nine of them escaped from the airport whilst four others ran away from a local hospital.
Police will file complaints against all of them and have also initiated proceedings to cancel their passports.
“If they don’t return by morning, we will publish their photos in the newspaper and register cases against them,” Deputy Commissioner of Amritsar Gurpreet Singh Khehra told NDTV.