Thousands could fly to England from India before it joins Covid travel ‘red list’

UK government accused of acting too slowly as fears grow over new variant discovered in subcontinent

Thousands of people could fly from India to England before it is added to the travel “red list” from Friday, amid growing criticism that the government acted too slowly to restrict the spread of a variant which may be more resistant to vaccines.

In a move announced hours after Boris Johnson bowed to pressure to cancel a key trip to India to boost economic ties, the health secretary, Matt Hancock, said most travel from the country would be banned from 4am on Friday. Only British citizens and residents will be allowed in, and all must quarantine in a hotel for 10 days.

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