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416 sailors come back home

Vasco : Three passenger relief flights arrived at the Dabolim airport from Italy on Wednesday, carrying 416 stranded Indian seafarers.

Airport director Gagan Malik said that first Neos flight with 168 seafarers (of which 160 were Goans), landed at the Dabolim airport  at around 10.20 am.

Of the 168  sailors that came in the first fight, 120 seafarers were taken   to the Goa Medical College and Hospital at Bambolim, while remaining 48 seafarers were ferried to a hotel in Morjim for quarantining.

“The seafarers were screened through thermal scanners at the airport, and samples of their throat swabs were taken for conducting tests,” Malik  said.

The second flight from Italy carrying 167 stranded seamen  touched down  at the airport at around 3.30 pm, while the third  flight with 81 seafarers arrived at around 10.15 pm.

While going back, the third relief flight  took back some 38  stranded Italian tourists,  as per an approval given by the Director General of Civil Aviation.

Some seafarers were immediately taken to the GMC at Bambolim, while the others were bussed to various quarantine centres across the state after necessary medical formalities were completed in compliance with the guidelines issued by the Union ministries of home affairs,  health and family welfare  and external affairs, and the DGCA. Malik stressed that social distancing was maintained while the sailors were being ferried to the quarantine facilities.

Several senior administrative and police officials had camped at the airport since early morning, monitoring the situation from time to time.

A strong posse of  police personnel were deployed  in and around the airport to maintain law and order.

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