India withdraw travel restrictions on UK nationals arriving in India

India withdraw travel restrictions on UK nationals arriving in India

India on Wednesday (Oct. 12) withdrew the travel restrictions that it had imposed on UK nationals earlier. Issuing a fresh order, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said the earlier guidelines on international arrival dated February 17, 2021, shall be applicable for those arriving in India from the UK.

“Revised guidelines for UK nationals arriving in India issued on October 1, 2021, stand withdrawn, and earlier guidelines on international arrival dated February 17, 2021, shall be applicable for those arriving in India from the UK”, the Ministry of Health said in the new order. 

It must be noted that India had on October 1 decided to impose reciprocal travel restrictions on UK nationals including mandatory quarantine. The strict rules were applicable from October 4 for all UK nationals arriving in the country, irrespective of their vaccination status. 

The move from India came after UK’s earlier decision that it will scrap tough Covid-19 quarantine travel rules for 47 destinations, including India.

Earlier this month, the UK said eligible travellers vaccinated in over 37 new countries, including India and Pakistan, will be treated the same as returning fully vaccinated UK residents, so long as they have not visited a red list country or territory in the 10 days before arriving in England.

Furthermore, the UK opened up international travel and will recognise India’s vaccine certification system from October 11. The decision was taken after close technical cooperation between our ministries taking public health factors into account, a spokesperson for the British High Commission in New Delhi said.

The announcement from the UK follows a diplomatic row after the country had included Covishield in its approved vaccine formulations but refused to recognise Indians vaccinated with it as eligible for travel without quarantine measures. India had imposed reciprocal measures, requiring vaccinated British travellers to also quarantine at a declared destination on entry into India.

“We’re now making it easier and cheaper for people to travel by allowing fully vaccinated travellers from non-red list countries to use Lateral Flow Tests on Day 2 of arrival, as long as they provide proof of use,” said UK Health Secretary Sajid Javid.

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