The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on Saturday said that passengers will be “de-boarded” from flights if they don’t wear masks properly inside the aircraft or don’t follow “Covid-19 appropriate behaviour”.
In case a passenger violates a protocol despite repeated warnings then they will be treated as “unruly passengers,” the aviation regulatory body also said.
DGCA also directed the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) and other police personnel deployed at the entrance of the airport to stop anyone who tries to enter the airport without a face mask. It also asked airport authorities to keep strict vigilance that no person is allowed inside the airport with a face mask. “In case, any passenger is not following COVID-19 Protocol they should be handed over to security agencies after proper warnings. If required, they may be dealt as per law,” the regulator said in the statement. “The adherence to directions shall be ensured by all concerned with immediate effect. Strict action shall be taken in case of any violation,” it added.
The warnings also come as the country is witnessing a sharp spike in its daily cases of infection.
On Saturday, India’s Covid-19 tally jumped to 11,333,728 after it added 24,882 cases in the span of 24 hours. This is the fourth time that the country’s single-day cases have crossed the 20,000-mark this year. The active cases also soared to 202,022, after a downward trend since January 20, as 4,785 new cases were added in the last 24 hours, comprising 1.74% of the total cases seen so far. The death toll stood at 158,446 after 140 fresh fatalities.
Experts have attributed the negligence in behaviour as a reason behind the rise in the Covid-19 infection. On Friday, Union health minister Harsh Vardhan urged people to follow social distancing norms and wear masks as he pointed that at least six states are reporting a spike in the cases.