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India Bars Entry of Its Nationals from Iran over Lack of COVID-19 Testing

The New Delhi government has refused to grant entry to its nationals returning from Iran out of fear of the coronavirus epidemic and a lack of adequate testing capabilities.

According to Tasnim, the Indian government was recently asked to send a plane to Iran and take all its nationals back to India amid the outbreak of the deadly virus in Iran.

New Delhi turned down Iran’s request and set new conditions, calling on Iran to send the Indian citizens back with its own plane.

To show its brotherly ties with New Delhi, Tehran accepted the conditions but the Indian government this time, apparently due to its lack of options to diagnose the novel coronavirus, asked Iran to do comprehensive coronavirus tests on the nationals and that is while such high-level tests are time-consuming.

Since Iran had accepted to run initial COVID-19 tests, the Indian government’s new conditions would mean New Delhi’s refusal to accept its own nationals.

On the other hand, such stonewalling efforts by the Indian government have also left Iranian nationals high and dry in the South Asian country.

The coronavirus — named COVID-19 — first emerged in China late last year and is now spreading in Europe and across the Middle East, sparking fears of a global pandemic.

Since December 2019, over 91,300 people have been infected in several countries, with 3,120 deaths mostly in China.

According to the figures released by Iran’s Health Ministry, 77 Iranians have died and 2,336 have been infected.

Most of the infections have been reported in Tehran, Rasht and Qom where the virus was first found.

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