(Pooja Pal; Intern Journalist): BENGALURU: Karnataka may do away with quarantining regulations for inter-state travelers after the domestic flight operations resume on Monday. 

On Thursday, K Sudhakar-Medical education minister, in a gathering of officials & public health experts in Bengaluru, alleged that they are finding every possible way and questioned whether people should be home quarantined or stop being quarantined at all. Such words of his favored a halt in quarantining protocol altogether as they have to face assorted challenges while quarantining a large number of people at airports.   

The government may not be able to handle the sheer scale of quarantining people institutionally as the inflow of passengers will increase over the next few weeks, he said.

“We are looking at the capacity of our quarantining facilities and the number of people that may enter Karnataka from Monday,” he said.

The state is likely to release new protocols in two to three days, after the second round of discussion on Friday. As of now, about 1.1 lakh people are institutionally quarantined in Karnataka. About four lakh people are waiting to enter the state. Political leaders and bureaucrats are not keen to continue with the system of 14 days of quarantine, be it institutional or home, for inter-state travelers as they say it kills the very purpose of easing the lockdown. Most people who will fly down to the state once flight operations resume come for business purposes and you cannot impose two weeks of quarantine.

The state has also indicated a shift in the priority from containing the spread of Covid-19 to saving lives, as the country prepares to adapt to the new normal of living with the virus. The focus, henceforth, will be to ensure quick medical support to a Covid-19 patient in need of immediate help. Saving lives is the biggest challenge before us.

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