Chaos, long lines, confusion: What landing at Mumbai airport looks like after new Covid rules

Chaotic scenes are being witnessed at the Mumbai airport after the Maharashtra government made it mandatory for passengers from Delhi, Goa, Gujarat and Rajasthan to carry a negative Covid RT-PCR report while travelling to the state.

advertisement
Passengers have complained of confusion, long queues as well as the violation of social distancing norms as they stand to get their samples collected for Covid testing at the Mumbai airport. (Reuters file photo)

About two weeks after the Maharashtra government made negative test results mandatory for passengers travelling from certain states, the process of arriving in the state is yet to be smoothened.

Regardless of whether you have a negative Covid test report or not, passengers are spending hours standing in long queues at the Mumbai airport, waiting to be cleared by authorities.

Chaotic scenes are being witnessed at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport, especially for getting Covid-19 testing done on spot.

As per Maharashtra government guidelines, passengers need to carry a negative RT-PCR test report while boarding their flight from Delhi, Goa, Gujarat and Rajasthan. The RT-PCR test must be done within 72 hours of scheduled landing time in Maharashtra.

Those passengers who do not have a negative Covid report can get tested at the Mumbai airport.

But this is where the trouble begins.

Passengers have complained of confusion, long queues as well as the violation of social distancing norms as they stand to get their samples collected for Covid testing at the Mumbai airport.

Limited manpower and few testing kiosks have ensured passengers are in for a discomforting landing experience at the Mumbai airport.

If you choose to get tested at the airport itself, you will have to submit your ID (Aadhaar), your picture as well as the address in the city where you will be staying.

Then you have to register online, get a token number and wait for your turn, which can take hours. For some, the wait can be as long as six-seven hours!

Amid the chaos, several passengers without negative reports have also managed to give the authorities a slip.

However, those who do submit their samples are allowed to leave the airport and wait for their test results. In case, a passenger tests Covid positive, they are expected to undergo quarantine.

Those who submit wrong personal details at the airport are liable to face police action under the Pandemic Act.

Sushant Kinra, chief operating officer of Suburban Diagnostics, which has been mandated to conduct tests at the airport, said they are facing multiple issues but are trying to resolve the problems in coordination with the airport authority.