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In the wake of a new fast-spreading coronavirus strain which has gone "out of control" in the United Kingdom, the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maharashtra government has on Monday imposed new rules for passengers arriving from Europe.

The government has decided to conduct mandatory 14-day institutional quarantine for all passengers from all over Europe after landing at the airport. The Municipal Commissioners have been asked to arrange hotels and independent hospitals for quarantining international passengers, while the Chief Minister has directed them to set up a separate hospital for passengers from Europe if they show symptoms of the new strain.

"From today, 14 days institutional quarantine has been made mandatory for passengers arriving in Maharashtra from all European countries as well as Middle Eastern countries. These passengers will be subjected to RT-PCR testing on the fifth or seventh day after quarantine. They will be released home after completing their quarantine period. The Municipal Commissioners at the airports where international flights land should arrange hotels and independent hospitals for quarantining such passengers. The Chief Minister also directed to set up a separate hospital for passengers from Europe if they have symptoms of the new virus," read a press release from the government.

"Passengers from other countries will be checked and stamped with their hands and will be home quarantined. The Chief Minister also directed to provide PPE kits to all airport staff checking passengers from European countries, Middle East countries," the release added.

Besides, the Maharashtra government has also imposed a night curfew in all municipal corporations in the state from December 22 to January 5. The curfew will be imposed from 11 pm to 6 am. "We have to be extremely vigilant for the next 15 days. Accordingly, the curfew in all municipal areas shall be in force from 11pm-6 am daily till January 5," said CM Thackeray.

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