Thailand shuts off travel from India, denies giving sanctuary to its uber-rich


Airport staff hand out hand sanitizer to travelers at Suvarnabhumi Airport. Photo: Suvarnabhumi Airport
Airport staff hand out hand sanitizer to travelers at Suvarnabhumi Airport. Photo: Suvarnabhumi Airport

With India a crucible for the spread of COVID-19, Thailand has joined other nations in barring travel from the South Asian nation amid rumors it had been allowing some of its wealthiest to skirt protocols.

Thailand has stopped granting certificates of entry for Indian travelers– whether citizens or foreign residents – after it reported a record-high 349,691 new COVID-19 cases Sunday, COVID-19 task force spokesperson Taweesilp Wissanuyothin said, amid reports that India’s wealthiest were chartering flights to escape the situation.

Sunday saw the Thai embassy in New Delhi announce it would cancel and suspend travel docs for all non-Thai nationals coming from India starting Saturday.

In announcing the news, health officials also attempted to debunk rumors that charter flights carrying wealthy Indians had been arriving in Thailand.

“There were no charter flights from India to Thailand,” Taweesilp said.

Four repatriation flights will return Thais from India on Saturday, May 8, May 15 and May 22, according to the Civil Aviation Authority. As of yesterday, only one Thai passenger had booked the first flight on Saturday.

Thailand joins a number of nations including Singapore, the United Kingdom, Germany, the Maldives and Bangladesh to bar travel from India.

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CITY: BANGKOKCATEGORY: NEWSSUB-CATEGORIES: HEALTH, TRANSPORTATIONTAGS: ,

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