No 10-day mandatory quarantine for UK tourists in India, earlier order withdrawn

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The move comes after the UK government accepted Covishield and its certificate as valid vaccination and thereby exempting vaccinated Indians from mandatory quarantine in the UK. 

The travel guideline the Centre issued on October 1 in a tit-for-tat move to the United Kingdom now stands withdrawn, the Union health ministry has now written to all states and Union territories, lifting the mandatory 10-day quarantine for passengers coming from the United Kingdom. “Based on the evolving scenario, it has been decided that the revised guidelines…stand withdrawn and the earlier guidelines on international arrival dated 17th February 2021 shall be applicable to all travellers arriving in India from the United Kingdom,” joint secretary Lav Agarwal wrote.

Following a wide range of discussions between the India and the UK governments, the UK from October 11 exempted fully vaccinated Indians from mandatory quarantine in the UK.  

The move was long-pending as the UK recognised India’s Covishield vaccine, which is a formulation of the Oxford-Astrazeneca vaccine but raised some doubts over India’s vaccine certificate. Hence, between October 4 and October 11, Indians administered with both doses of Covishield had to undergo mandatory quarantine in the UK like non-vaccinated travellers.

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India has not made quarantine mandatory for vaccinated travellers coming from any country. The move for UK passengers was in reciprocation to UK’s discrimination against Covishield and the Indian vaccine certificate. India had earlier warned that countries that will not recognise India’s vaccines will face similar action in India.

“I’m absolutely delighted that the UK government cooperated very well with the Indian government. Now, this enables Indian visitors, vaccinated with recognised vaccines, which include Covishield, to enter the United Kingdom without quarantine. We now have to get people moving between the two countries. People are desperate to come here (India),” British high commissioner to India Alex Ellis said earlier.

After the UK agreed to recognise Covishield and its certificate, the Centre said it will issue similar relaxation for UK travellers and the health ministry will issue the guideline. 

With the mandatory quarantining now lifted, vaccinated people coming from the UK to India will require a negative RT-PCR test report and a self-declaration form.

 

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