Twitter was abuzz with concerning tweets since morning ahead of sealing of borders to international flights from tomorrow onwards, as people landing from abroad today at Delhi IGI airport, had to wait for medical checkup for more than 6 hours. Some travellers have tweeted claiming to have waited for more than 14 hours.
Tweets with video footages show how social distancing is a distant dream when it comes to immigration counter as passengers from various international flights awaited their turn for check-up. Crowd management became a serious problem at the immigration counters, people started losing patience, some thumped the desk and started shouting.
This is the scene at Delhi Indra Gandhi International airport for last 6 hours, a day before 'Janta curfew'.#Delhi#COVI19Delhi#Covid_19#Covid_19india@PMOIndia@narendramodi @ArvindKejriwal pic.twitter.com/kzMNJot2zd— surbhi puri (@surbhi215) March 21, 2020
Some passengers also tweeted about children and elderly people suffering the most as there is no access to food. Complaints were made about the thermal screening taking place with delays, medical practitioners being very casual and the time between screening and the receipt of certificates is ranging from three to four hours.
A 20 year old passenger traveling from Canada had to wait for more than 14 hours to fulfil all the procedures. Tweets were also posted today appeal to Prime minister Narendra Modi to intervene.
Delhi airport spokesperson promptly replied to Republic TV’s query, “Minimum 4 hours is required because screening is taking place on two levels.
And all of the passengers coming from abroad are suggested home quarantine and being stamped. We urge passengers to keep calm. 150-200 passengers are on board every international flight, at one go everyone can't be screened. So twenty people are being screened at intervals., It’s bound to take time.” Another Delhi airport official says,“The staff of Air India and our Airport immigration officers are serving the country just like our armed forces. They are doing an extremely tough but terrific job.”
“As per the latest govt advisory, all international arriving passengers have to undergo compulsory health screening and quarantine procedure by Airport Health Organisation (APHO). This may lead to a longer wait time at T3 international arrival. We continue to support all our stakeholders to minimize inconvenience to the passengers,” Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL) said in a tweet.