COVID-19: Indian foreign minister urges UK to resolve quarantine dispute


India’s foreign minister has urged Britain to remove a rule requiring Indians visiting there to quarantine even if they are fully vaccinated on Tuesday.

Foreign Minister, Subramaniyam Jaishankar said after meeting with British counterpart, Liz Truss in New York attending the UN General Assembly, promoting an early resolution of the quarantine issue for mutual benefit.

The British High Commission Embassy in New Delhi said Britain is working with India to solve the problem.

“We are working with the Government of India to find ways to extend UK approval for vaccine certification to people vaccinated by relevant Indian public health agencies.”

Despite the fact that the Indian Covishield vaccine, developed by AstraZeneca and manufactured in India by the Pune-based Serum Institute, is the same dose given to millions of British people, not recognized by the United Kingdom under the new rules.

British people vaccinated in the UK at the same Indian dose do not need to be quarantined.

However, it also could lead to retaliation from New Delhi, and Indian government sources say they are likely to take mutual action if the problem is not resolved quickly.

The rule requiring 10 days of self-quarantine for travelers arriving from India also applies to many other countries using Covishield, including most African countries.

India’s opposition lawmaker said, “It’s unpleasant to ask a fully vaccinated Indian to quarantine.”

The AstraZeneca vaccine has so far accounted for most of the doses given to Indians. Few people are taking a unique vaccine developed by Bharat Biotech that is not used in the UK.

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