Amid a slight resurgence in new COVID-19 infections across the country, the Directorate General Of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on Wednesday asked all Indian air carriers to strictly enforce COVID-19 protocol including wearing of masks by passengers inside the aircraft. The aviation regulator of India has also said that it will be conducting random checks on aircraft to see if COVID SOPs are enforced or not.

"Airlines have to ensure that passengers are wearing face masks properly throughout the journey and there is proper sensitisation of passengers through various platforms", the DGCA said in a statement today adding, "we will be conducting random checks in aircraft across the country to see if the COVID-19 protocol is being enforced or not".

"In case a passenger does not comply with the directions, strict action will be taken by airlines against the passenger," it added. In view of the rise in the number of COVID-19 cases, the airlines have been advised again on August 16 to strictly comply with COVID-19 protocol inside the aircraft, the DGCA mentioned.

The advisory for the airline carriers came as India recorded 9,062 fresh COVID-19 infections, during the last 24 hours, which took its tally to 4,42,86,256, while the number of active cases came down to 1,05,058. The death toll climbed to 5,27,134 with 36 new fatalities, including six reconciled by Kerala.

The active cases comprise 0.24 per cent of the total infections. The national COVID-19 recovery rate stands at 98.57 per cent. A decline of 6,194 cases has been recorded in the active COVID-19 caseload in a span of 24 hours.

The daily positivity rate was recorded at 2.49 per cent and the weekly positivity rate at 4.38 per cent. The number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 4,36,54,064, while the case fatality rate was recorded at 1.19 per cent.

Meanwhile, Delhi has been witnessing a nearly two-fold increase in hospitalisations in over a fortnight, with officials saying those with comorbidities are getting admitted to hospitals. Even though the rise in infections and hospitalisations is not yet alarming, experts have reiterated the need to wear masks and follow Covid-appropriate behaviour.

Dr Suresh Kumar, medical director of state-run LNJP Hospital, said in the last one week or so, they are observing a rise in hospital admissions due to the viral infection, "In the last week or so, the number of patients has seen an increase. Earlier, we would get four to five patients on a daily basis but now we have been getting eight to 10 patients every day," he said.

Posted By: Talibuddin Khan