It does not matter how strict and the smart regulations made by the Government, people always find a way out of it. To Avoid the mandatory COVID tests in Goa, now the tourists started to traveling to Karnataka to fly back to Mumbai and other states of Maharashtra.
Looking at the lucrative opportunity the state government in Goa has increased the cost of the COVID test to Rs. 4500/- which is way more expensive and tourists easily afford to travel to Karnataka by road to fly back to Maharashtra and at the same time saving on the cost of COVID test in Goa.
To skip the Covid test, many people from Goa are traveling by road to airports in Belagavi, Hubballi, and Mangaluru, from where they take flights to Mumbai and other places in Maharashtra.
The Maharashtra state government has recently announced the new SOPs for the people traveling from Goa to avoid the possibility of a second wave of Covid-19 infection, but that resulted in affecting the tourism business in Goa as many of travelers have deferred their travel plans to Goa.
If they travel directly from Goa to airports in Maharashtra, they will have to stick to the travel rules but that does not apply if they board flights from Karnataka.
Now that the people who have entered Goa before the announcement of the new SOP by the Maharashtra Government has decided to enter their state en-route Karnataka since there are no restrictions for the people traveling from Karnataka State to Maharashtra.
According to the new SOP, the people entering Maharashtra from states witnessing Covid cases spike in Delhi, Rajasthan, Gujarat, and Goa are required to show RT-PCR negative report on arrival at airports, railway stations, and state borders, or have to undergo immediate tests. But in reality, there is no spike in Covid cases in Goa compared to there states like Maharashtra, Delhi, Gujarat, and Rajasthan.
According to the new SOP, the people entering Maharashtra from states witnessing a Covid spike-like Delhi, Rajasthan, Gujarat, and Goa are required to show RT-PCR negative reports on arrival at airports.
Meanwhile, Hubballi Airport director Pramod Kumar Thakre said that they do not keep track of the travel record of passengers boarding flights at their airport and added that he needs to check if the traffic to Maharashtra has increased recently.
But sources in private airlines confirmed that occupancy has been full in the last few days.
A Mumbai-based family that drove all the way to Mangaluru from Old Goa to take a Mumbai flight on Saturday said they had to change the itinerary. “We had no plans to visit Udupi and Mangaluru and were supposed to return from Goa. We had to take a flight from Mangaluru to skip the ‘unnecessary’ Covid test.”
Source: Indian Express