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13 Covid patients escape quarantine in Punjab after travelling from Italy

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13 Covid patients escape quarantine in Punjab after travelling from Italy
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Amritsar: 13 people who tested positive for Covid-19 after arriving on a chartered flight in Amritsar from Milan, Italy have escaped institutional quarantine after giving doctors and security the slip, police reports said on Thursday. The police are currently tracking them down and have warned the public that their photos will be published in the paper if they do not surrender by Friday morning.

The patients were admitted to Amritsar's Guru Nanak Dev Hospital. "We will initiate proceedings to cancel their passport," Deputy Commissioner of Amritsar Gurpreet Singh Khehra told NDTV.

"If they don't return by morning, we will publish their photos in the newspaper," he warned, adding, FIRs under the Epidemic Act and the Disaster Management Act will be registered against them…We are trying our best to keep our district away from the disease and negligence of patients will not be tolerated at any cost," DC Khera said.

The escaped patients were part of a cohort of 125 people who tested Covid positive after landing on a special chartered flight carrying 179 passengers from Italy. The Indian government has been strictly testing travellers from Italy as it is at high-risk for potential Omicron infections. However the passengers created a ruckus at the Punjab airport as they demanded to know how they tested positive after having received Covid-negative tests in Italy.

Chartered flights have been used to repatriate citizens of a country who have been stranded abroad since Covid shut down most of international travel. India has still not opened up international travel due to prevailing high rates of infection by the Omicron variant. Since the pandemic began, almost 11,000 UK nationals have been repatriated from India using special chartered flights.

A special chartered flight was also arranged from Afghanistan on December 10-11, in order to bring back 104 vulnerable citizens like Afghan Sikhs, Hindus and Indian citizens in Kabul. The flight also carried emergency medical supplies which were donated to the Indira Gandhi Children's Hospital in Kabul. 85 Afghan nationals were repatriated on the return flight to Kabul.

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TAGS:Covid-19 Punjab Italy India Airport International flights 
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