Dubai: Kuwait’s directorate general of civil aviation said early on Saturday that it had suspended all direct commercial flights coming from India, effective April 24 and until further notice.
The move was on the instructions of health authorities after an evaluation of the global coronavirus status.
All passengers arriving from India either directly or via another country will be banned from entering unless they have spent at least 14 days out of India, the statement said.
Kuwaiti citizens, their first degree relatives and their domestic workers will be allowed to enter. Cargo is unaffected.
Starting today (April 24, 11.59 pm) travel for passengers from India will be suspended for all incoming flights on national and foreign carriers.
Flights carrying transit passengers will also be barred from coming to the UAE with the exception of transit flights coming to the UAE and heading onward to India.
This decision includes the entry of travellers who were in India in the last 14 days prior to coming to the UAE.
Flights to India
The UAE authorities have clarified that flights between the 2 countries will continue to operate allowing the transportation of passengers from the UAE to India. It will also allow the transfer of exempted groups from India to the UAE with the application of the aforementioned precautionary measures.
These groups include Emirati citizens, diplomatic missions appointed by the two countries, official delegations, those on business men chartered flights, and those holding golden residency provided that they undertake preventive measures that include quarantine for 10 days and a PCR test at the airport, as well as on the fourth and eighth days following entry into the country.
Moreover, the required PCR test period has been reduced from 72 hours to 48 hours prior to travel from accredited laboratories that issue test results carrying a QR code.
The authority also confirmed that it is required for those coming from India through other countries to stay in those countries for at least 14 days before being allowed to enter the country, starting from 23:59 on Saturday April 24, 2021.
These regulations will apply for a period of 10 days, which can be extended, while cargo flights continue to operate between the two countries.
Growing travel restrictions
The list of countries blocking flights from India is getting longer by the day as the country continues to report a record number of daily infections, hit hard by the second coronavirus wave.
India on April 23 reported 332,730 cases over the past 24 hours, the second consecutive day that new cases topped 300,000.
Following the surge and the fear that travellers may carry the infection, more than a dozen countries have imposed travel restrictions from India. While countries such as United Kingdom, Canada, Hong Kong, New Zealand, UAE, Indonesia, Kuwait and Australia have banned flights from India. France has imposed mandatory quarantine for Indian passengers and the United States’ Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has advised against travel to India.