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MHA issues new SOPs for stranded Indians who wish to return

New Delhi, May 24: The government on Sunday issued a Standard Operating Protocol (SOP) for the return of Indians stranded abroad due to the coronavirus lockdown, saying it will be a paid service and preference will be given to those in distress – those who have lost their jobs or are pregnant.
A similar SOP has also been issued by the government for those who are stranded in India and wish to travel abroad.
As per the latest SOP, issued by the Union Home Ministry, those who wish to return to India will have to register themselves with the Indian missions in that country, along with necessary details as prescribed by the Ministry of External Affairs.
Priority will be given to compelling cases in distress, including migrant workers, labourers who have been laid off, short-term visa-holders facing expiry of visas, persons with medical emergency, pregnant women, elderly, those required to return to India due to a death in the family, and students, the SOP said.
The cost of travel, as specified by the carrier, will be borne by such travellers, it said.
All those who will arrive from abroad will have to follow the guidelines for quarantine arrangements issued by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), the SOP said. (PTI)