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Pakistan bans incoming passengers from India over COVID variant concerns  

ISLAMABAD: The National Command Operation Centre (NCOC) meeting headed by Asad Umar on Monday placed India on C-category for travellers, banning incoming passengers over concerns regarding a COVID variant found in the neighbouring country, ARY NEWS reported.

The NCOC meeting headed by Federal Minister for Planning and Development Asad Umar reviewed the COVID-19 situation in the country and decided to ban incoming passengers from India.

The NCOC decided to place India in the C-category for two weeks, placing a ban on incoming passengers from the neighbouring country through land and air routes.

The body reviewing the COVID-19 situation found that the Indian variant is spreading at a fast pace in the neighbouring country, besides this, it was also found in other parts of the globe.

Furthermore, the NCOC also decided to review the inclusion of countries in the C-category on April 21.

Nationwide, India reported 261,500 new cases on Sunday, taking the total number of cases to nearly 14.8 million, second only to the United States, which has reported more than 31 million infections. The country’s deaths from COVID-19 rose by a record 1,501 to reach a total of 177,150.

Read More: ’Dire need of beds, oxygen’: India’s capital under siege from COVID-19

As cases rise across India, criticism is mounting over how Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s administration has handled the health crisis, as religious festivals and election rallies attended by thousands continue.

India’s government relaxed almost all lockdown curbs of last year by the beginning of 2021, although some regions including New Delhi and the state of Maharashtra, home to financial hub Mumbai, have introduced localised restrictions.

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