All passengers traveling to Bengaluru will need a COVID-19 negative report from April 1: Health Minister

Karnataka Health Minister Dr. K Sudhakar said that from April 1, all passengers traveling to Bengaluru from outside Karnataka would need to undergo RT-PCR tests and show a negative report before they enter the city due to the second wave of COVID-19. Earlier, the state government made it mandatory for passengers from Punjab, Chandigarh, Maharashtra, and Kerala to carry a negative RT-PCR test report before entering Karnataka.

The Health Minister said this was decided as about 1,400 cases had been registered in Bengaluru on Wednesday, which is the highest in the last four months, and 60% of Bengaluru’s cases have a travel history.

The government has also said that those who opt for home isolation will be hand-stamped to curb infections. He suggested that the Quarantine Watch application, initiated to track home isolation, will be brought back to use. The application’s use was paused after the state witnessed a drop in cases.

Due to a spike in cases, the government will impose restrictions on events. He added that only 200 people will be allowed to attend indoor-held events, while 500 people will be permitted outdoors.

Talking about the government’s preparations to tackle the upsurge in Bengaluru, Dr. Sudhakar said 400 beds have been reserved for Covid patients.

Noting that 200 ambulances have been arranged in the city, he said that more ambulances will be introduced to fight the pandemic based on the requirement. He added that Private hospitals have also been asked to be prepared in case of a massive surge.

On Wednesday, Karnataka reported more than 2,000 cases for the second straight day. It was the first time since November 2020, when the state recorded over 2,000 daily cases. While there has been an increase in cases since the beginning of March, there has been no increase in the fatality rate.

Karnataka Health Minister warned that those found not wearing masks in the state would be fined. The fine for not wearing masks in urban areas Rs 250, and in rural areas is Rs 100.

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