Passengers showing Covid-19 symptoms will be isolated and moved to a hospital in an ambulance with police escort.
The Kannur International Airport is fully equipped to accommodate the returning Indian citizens on Tuesday evening, said Vasudevan Thulasidas IAS, managing director of Kannur International Airport Ltd (KIAL).
Apart from the fact that the airport has undergone thorough sanitisation, Thulasidas said all airport staff handling the incoming passengers would be wearing complete personal protection equipment (PPE). “This includes the ground staff, immigration officials, baggage handlers, district authority officials, as well as baggage handlers,” Thulasidas added.
He spoke to Khaleej Times about the airport’s preparedness to accept 177 distressed passengers who will be landing in Kannur on board an Air India Express flight on Tuesday at 7.10pm (IST). He said the list of passengers arriving at Kannur was shared with the hospital authorities beforehand.
As part of the Vande Bharat Mission, a special Air India Express repatriation flight has been arranged to the Kannur International Airport from Dubai on Tuesday. A second flight carrying 177 passengers has also been arranged to Mangalore International Airport, said Consulate officials. So far, seven emergency flights from the UAE have flown distressed Indian citizens home.
Non-Kannur residents will be provided transportation home
He said, “On today’s flight, there are several passengers on the list who live in neighbouring districts, including Kasargode, Kozhikode, Malappuram, Mahe, Wayanad, and there is one passenger from Thrissur as well.” While Kannur residents will be provided transportation to quarantine facilities in the district, the others will be offered police-escorted transport to their respective quarantine facilities or homes, pointed out the officer.
District officials have identified hotels in Kannur district as quarantine facilities. Asymptomatic pregnant women, infants, and elderly passengers will be allowed to travel to their homes. “However, they must have isolation room with an attached bathroom in these homes. The district officers have inspected these homes in advance, and the authorities will constantly monitor their movement,” explained Thulasidas.
What to expect at the airport?
Commenting on the facilities at the airport, Thulasidas said: “The passengers will be broken into groups of 20, and once they disembark from the flight, they will undergo a medical screening. Ten special counters have been set up for this purpose. There are another 10 counters for immigration as well.”
Passengers showing Covid-19 symptoms, including elderly persons and pregnant women, will be isolated and upon completion of their immigration procedures and baggage collection, they will be moved to a hospital in an ambulance with police escort.
“Those not showing symptoms can proceed further. The district authority medical staff will conduct an awareness session for them, and a handbook will be provided to all the passengers,” said Thulasidas. Those who do not have a local number will be provided with a free BSNL sim card, following which, they will be served food and water.
Before immigration clearance, their data will be collected by district officers. Social distancing markers have been placed all over the airport. “These cannot be broken. Even at baggage collection, only one passenger is allowed to collect the bags,” he said. Once the passengers exit the airport, they will be provided transport by district authorities to their respective homes or to the quarantine facilities that have been earmarked for them.
Click here to read more news from @khaleejtimes