Negative RT-PCR report mandatory for those coming to Karnataka from Kerala

Karnataka has issued new guidelines mandating all those coming from Kerala to the State to carry a negative RT-PCR test report not older than 72 hours. Not just that, it has ruled that all those who have come to the State from Kerala in the last two weeks, exempting those with a negative test report not older than 72 hours, to be mandatorily subjected to COVID-19 test.

A similar restriction was placed earlier in the month in four districts bordering Kerala, but it was expanded to the entire State on Tuesday. This comes in the light of a COVID-19 cluster at a nursing college in Bengaluru being traced back mostly to Kerala returnees, even as the neighbouring State is reporting a high number of cases every day.

The guidelines say all the students in engineering and other professional colleges who have recently arrived from Kerala have to be tested for COVID-19. It calls for hostels, hotels, resorts, homestays, dormitories, and residential communities to ensure that persons checking in after travelling from Kerala have a COVID-19 negative certificate. It also asks hostels to ensure strict implementation of COVID-19 safety guidelines and appeals to students to not frequently travel to Kerala unless strongly justified. The guidelines call for ramping up testing and strengthening COVID-19 surveillance at all education institutions that accommodate students who have travelled from Kerala.

Commissioner of the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike N. Manjunath Prasad said those who try to enter the State/city without a negative RT-PCR report would have to undergo mandatory quarantine until they are tested and results are out.

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