The Karnataka state government on Thursday issued a clarification about incoming flights from five COVID-19-hit states in India. There were reports that the southern state has banned all incoming flights from Maharashtra, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, all of which have been the worst-hit COVID-19 states in India. The move was to contain the spread of coronavirus in the state, but a clarification has been issued to debunk the viral reports.

"Karnataka has appealed to the Civil Aviation Ministry to take steps to lessen the air traffic to the State, with the sacred intention that there may not be adequate quarantine facilities, if there is huge turnout at a short span of time," Karnataka minister JC Madhu Swami clarified.

Karnataka's coronavirus toll spikes

By reducing the incoming flights from the COVID-hit regions, the Karnataka state government is trying to keep a lid on the growing number of infections. Moreover, the decision comes after it was found that most new cases have been reported in people travelling from other states or countries.

Karnataka to ease lockdown from May 18: gyms, salons to reopen

According to an NDTV report, 118 of the 135 new cases reported in the last 24 cases were of people who travelled into the state.

"We will see that no infected person from Maharashtra, Gujarat or Tamil Nadu will enter by road, for some for some 10, 15 days, because we have heavy load on us," Swami had said after a cabinet meeting about the rising cases of coronavirus in the state.

A ban on entry of people from the five states was in place even after the lockdown 4 was announced on May 18. Once the flights started operating again, the ban was lifted following an order from the Centre that movement of passengers will be permitted with the consent of both states.

Migrant workers
Migrant workers

State-wise coronavirus cases tally

Karnataka has reported a total of 2,418 cases of coronavirus so far, of which 781 have been cured and 47 are dead. Comparatively, coronavirus cases in Maharashtra, Gujarat and Tamil Nadu are much higher at about 54,758, 14,821 and 17,728, respectively. India has reported a total of over 158,000 cases, 67,692 of these recovered and 4,531 dead.