BASSETERRE, St. Kitts - IN light of the astronomical number of deaths and positive cases of the Coronavirus in India, just one day after Grenada had imposed a travel ban on people coming from that country, the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis has done the same.
India now joins South Africa, Brazil and the United Kingdom on the list of banned countries where people cannot travel to the Federation if they would have departed within a 14-day period from those jurisdictions.
In a media statement, the National Covid-19 Task Force revealed that acting on the advice of the Federal Ministry of Health, the travel advisory originally issued on February 7, 2021 and extended twice thus far, has been further extended for an additional 30 days and becomes effective as of May 4, 2021.
India, one of the region’s closest partners, has seen an astronomical spike in the number of COVID-19 cases and deaths.
Official data coming out of New Delhi points to an average of more than 300, 000 confirmed cases daily.
“This new travel advisory comes as a result of the Government’s firm interest in continuing to protect our borders and the health and wellness of our citizens and residents in response to the three new variants of the Covid-19 virus that have originated in Brazil, South Africa, and the UK. The inclusion of India in the travel advisory comes in light of the widespread rates of Covid-19 in that Asian country, particularly as a result of the double mutants of the virus which are responsible for average daily infections exceeding 380,000. India has already confirmed 20.7 million cases of Covid-19, and some 226,000 deaths,” the statement read.
Despite concerns that the threat travellers from those jurisdictions might pose with three variants, the same ban was not imposed on the United States where several new variants and the three variants are present.
“The evidence has shown that Covid-19 variants are deemed to be far more transmissible and have a higher likelihood of death from the symptoms of Covid-19,” the Task Force statement noted.
The advisory warned that persons intending to travel from the aforementioned countries to St. Kitts and Nevis are advised not to do so at this time.
It noted that “Entry will be denied in particular to those whose journeys originated in India up to two weeks (i.e. one incubation period) prior to their intended arrival into the Federation. Persons are reminded that travel into the Federation is controlled by the National Covid-19 Task Force and must be approved by the Ministry of National Security”.
It is further advised that all citizens and legal residents returning from any of the aforementioned countries would not be denied re-entry into the country, but they must also process their travel requests through the online platform www.knatravelform.kn