Washington: The US has lowered its travel advisory for India from the highest Level 4, meaning no travel, to Level 3, which urges citizens to reconsider it, amidst a drop in the number of COVID-19 deaths and infections in the country.
India recorded 30,093 new coronavirus infections, the lowest in 125 days, taking the total tally of COVID-19 cases to 3,11,74,322, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Tuesday. The death toll climbed to 4,14,482 with 374 daily fatalities, the lowest in 111 days, while the active cases have declined to 4,06,130, the lowest in 117 days.
When last month's advisory was issued, India was struggling with a second wave of the pandemic with more than 3,00,000 daily new coronavirus cases being reported. Hospitals in many parts of the country were reeling under a shortage of medical oxygen and beds. The US also eased travel recommendations on Pakistan from Level 4 to Level 3.
The improvement of the travel advisories for India and Pakistan by the State Department on Monday comes in an acknowledgment of the improving COVID-19 pandemic situation in the region. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 3 Travel Health Notice for India due to COVID-19, indicating a high level of COVID-19 in the country, the State Department said on Monday. "Your risk of contracting COVID-19 and developing severe symptoms may be lower if you are fully vaccinated with an FDA authorised vaccine.
Before planning any international travel, please review the CDC's specific recommendations for vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers," it said. "Reconsider travel to India due to COVID-19. Exercise increased caution due to crime and terrorism," it said.
The latest travel advisory replaces the one issued on May 5 that had placed India in the Level 4 category.
While the CDC issued a Level 2 Travel Health Notice for Pakistan due to COVID-19, indicating a moderate level of the pandemic, the State Department maintained Level 3 risk for US citizens travelling to the country due to terrorism.
"Reconsider travel to Pakistan due to terrorism and sectarian violence. Exercise increased caution in Pakistan due to COVID-19. Some areas have increased risk. Read the entire Travel Advisory," the State Department said.