Washington: The US has imposed restrictions on travel from India starting Tuesday as the latter witnesses a tremendous surge in COVID-19 cases. However, the travel ban will not be applicable to certain categories of students, academics, journalists and individuals, the US State Department said. The exemptions from the travel ban were issued hours after Biden issued a proclamation restricting travel from India beginning May 4 because of the “extraordinarily high Covid-19 caseloads and multiple variants circulating in the country”. Also Read - Amid COVID Surge, US to Restrict Travel From India Starting May 4

WHO QUALIFY FOR THE EXEMPTION: Students seeking to commence studies in the fall, academics, journalists and individuals who provide critical infrastructure support in countries affected by a geographic Covid-19 restriction may qualify for the exception. This includes qualified applicants who have been present in India, Brazil, China, Iran, or South Africa.

Students with valid F-1 and M-1 visas intending to begin or continue an academic programme commencing August 1 or later do not need to contact an embassy or consulate to seek an individual exemption to travel. They may enter the United States no earlier than 30 days before the start of their academic studies.

According to the State Department, the travel ban exemption is in line with a similar exemption that the US has granted to some categories of travellers from Brazil, China, Iran and or South Africa. In keeping with the Department of State’s commitment to facilitate legitimate travel to the United States, Secretary Blinken decided today to apply the same set of National Interest Exceptions to India that he had previously applied to all other regional travel restrictions currently in effect as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the State Department said.

To know, who will be affected by the US travel ban. CLICK HERE