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India's Prime Minister Modi Announces National Lockdown

COVID-19 Locks down India for 21 Days

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India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a national 21-day national lockdown beginning March 24th at midnight.

“From 12 midnight, the whole country will go on lockdown. To save India, to save all citizens of India, to save you and your family, there will be a total ban on stepping out of home,” he said.

However, key information about how critical services were going to be maintained and essential supplies delivered during this period resulted in an almost nationwide panic.

Not only did the prime minister fail to mention concrete modalities on how the lockdown would allow for essential services and supplies to reach people, but he also left many people wondering whether all they would have to see themselves through till April 14 were the food and essentials already in their homes.

Unfortunately, this lack of information caused a rush to stock up on supplies, social-distancing at least temporarily being ignored.

Previously on March 19, 2020, the US State Department issued a Level 4: Do Not Travel Global Health Advisory based on the global impact of COVID-19.

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And effective March 22, the Government of India suspended all international flights arriving and departing from India for at least one week. 

U.S. citizens currently in India who wish to depart should contact their airline for flight availability at the earliest. The State Department is reviewing all options and will continue to provide information to US citizens as events progress.

The CDC recommends people should avoid all nonessential travel, but if you must travel:

  • Avoid contact with sick people.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
    • It is especially important to clean hands after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after coughing, sneezing or blowing your nose.
  • Avoid traveling if you are sick.

If you spent time in India in the last 14 days:

  • Stay home, monitor your health, and practice social distancing for 14 days after you return from travel. Social distancing means staying out of crowded places, avoiding group gatherings, and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet or 2 meters) from others when possible.

International travel news published by Vax-Before-Travel.