Tamil Nadu revises Covid-19 testing guidelines

PTI Chennai | Updated on May 31, 2020 Published on May 31, 2020

The Tamil Nadu government revised coronavirus testing guidelines on Sunday, after it announced new relaxations pertaining to intra and inter-state movement of people.

The government extended the lockdown till June 30 in the State, albeit with new set of relaxations, including allowing public transport, a day after the Centre announced ‘Unlock 1.0’ for graded exit from the lockdown.

The Tamil Nadu government had accordingly identified eight zones to allow people’s movement, opening up public transport in all but the four worst-affected districts of Chennai, Chengalpattu, Kancheepuram and Tiruvallur.

The zones have been formed by combining nearby districts. For example, Zone-I will have Coimbatore and its nearby districts of Tirupur, Nilgiris, Erode, Karur, Salem and Namakkal in western Tamil Nadu.

Rules for testing

According to Health Department guidelines, testing of incoming individuals in intra or inter-district movement within a zone is not required. However, “testing to be done only for those coming with symptoms,” when people travel from one zone to another, except Chennai, it said.

For those moving from Chennai to other zones, testing will be done for all, irrespective of whether the person had symptoms or not, it said. Those testing positive will be sent to a hospital while the negative cases will have to undergo a seven-day home quarantine, it said.

“Persons travelling for business trip and returning within 48 hours are exempted from quarantine,” but they have to furnish valid return document, the government said.

Those arriving in Tamil Nadu by air and train should have the mandatory e-pass even as testing will be done for all incoming passengers from the “hotspots” of Maharashtra, Delhi and Gujarat.

Positive cases will be referred to a hospital while those testing negative should undergo 14-day home or paid quarantine, it said.

Regarding persons coming from other States, all those with symptoms will be tested for the virus. Positive cases will be referred to a hospital, while those testing negative will have to undergo home or paid quarantine for 14 days, the government said.

Intra-state special trains

Meanwhile, the Southern Railway, set to operate four intra-state special trains from Monday, said passengers travelling from one zone to another have to obtain the Tamil Nadu government’s e-pass.

It will operate Coimbatore-Mayiladuthurai-Coimbatore Janshatabdi special, Madurai-Villupuram-Madurai Intercity Superfast special, Tiruchirappalli-Nagercoil-Tiruchirappalli Superfast special and Coimbatore-Katpadi-Coimbatore Intercity Superfast special from June 1.

Published on May 31, 2020
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