Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and urged him to stop flights from countries affected by the new COVID-19 variant Omicron.
"Our country has fought a tough fight against Corona for the last one and half years. We should do everything possible to prevent the new variant of concern from entering India," Arvind Kejriwal said in the letter.
In view of the new COVID-19 variant, a number of countries, including the European Union, have suspended travel to the affected regions, he said.
"We should do everything possible to prevent the new variant of concern, recently recognised by WHO, from entering India. A number of countries, including the European Union (EU), have suspended travel to the affected regions. I urge you to stop flights from these regions with immediate effect. Any delay in this regard may prove harmful if any affected person enters India," he said in the letter.
As concerns grow over the new COVID variant, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday called for a proactive approach and a review of plans for easing of international travel curbs, and urged people to be more cautious while several states moved quickly to take precautionary measures and remain vigilant.
As per an official statement issued by Prime Minister Office, officials briefed the PM about the new Variant of Concern 'Omicron' along with its characteristics and the impact seen in various countries.
Its implications for India were also discussed. The PM spoke about the need to be proactive in light of the new variant.
The PM highlighted the need for monitoring all international arrivals, their testing as per guidelines, with a specific focus on countries identified 'at risk'. He also asked officials to review plans for easing international travel restrictions in light of the emerging new evidence.
The Centre on Thursday had asked all states and Union territories to conduct rigorous screening and testing of all international travellers coming from or transiting through South Africa, Hong Kong and Botswana, where the variant of serious public health implications has been reported.
Meanwhile, the Delhi government has called a meeting of the Delhi Disaster Management Authority on Monday to discuss steps that need to be taken in view of threat of the new COVID-19 variant, Kejriwal had said on Friday.
(With inputs from Agencies)