The Union aviation ministry said in a note on Friday: “Airport operators shall conduct random test sampling through the NABL/ICMR empanelled laboratories at subsidised and uniform rates as applicable for all international airports. The cost of testing shall be reimbursed by the Union health ministry on submission of duly certified bills…”
The government had on Thursday (Dec 22) decided to resume these tests in wake of spurt in cases in some countries like China, Japan and US. Airlines will identify the 2% arriving international passengers on a random basis “preferably from different countries.”
“Such travellers will submit the samples and shall be allowed to leave the airport…. In case, any such travellers are tested positive, their samples should be sent for genetic testing at the designated INSACOG laboratory network,” the government memorandum, which comes into effect from 10 am Saturday untill further orders, says, adding the same “will be reviewed, if needed, as per the prevailing situation.”
“Airlines are required to direct their crew members to lead and bring identified 2% international arriving passengers to the testing facility at the airport. The airport operators would create necessary infrastructure to facilitate random testing of international arriving passengers at their respective airports,” it says.
After testing passengers will be required to furnish their “correct contact and address to the airport health officers.”