Afghanistan evacuees to India test positive for Covid-19


More than a dozen people in the latest group evacuated to India from Afghanistan tested positive for Covid-19 and have been quarantined, an organization involved in the evacuation said on Wednesday.

“Twelve to 15 people among the batch of 78 who were flown in from Kabul on Tuesday have tested positive … they are all asymptomatic, we don’t have the exact count,” Puneet Singh Chandhok of the India World Forum said.

The organization is helping the Ministry of External Affairs and the Indian Air Force with the evacuation along with the Delhi Sikh Gurudwara Management Committee.

At least 81 people who had come on flights from Kabul on Monday and Tuesday had been sent to a quarantine facility run by the Indo-Tibetan Border Police in Delhi, NDTV news channel reported.

India has so far evacuated 626 people from Afghanistan including 228 Indian citizens, according to Hardeep Puri, a former diplomat and minister in the Narendra Modi government. There were 77 Afghan Sikhs among those evacuated.

On Wednesday, a Home Ministry advisory said that owing to “the prevailing security situation in Afghanistan” it had been decided that all Afghan nationals travelling to India required the recently introduced emergency e-Visa.

“Keeping in view some reports that certain passports of Afghan nationals have been misplaced, previously issued visas to all Afghan nationals, who are presently not in India, are invalidated with immediate effect,” the message said.

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