As the coronavirus pandemic continues to rage on in India with almost 4 lakh positive cases being reported on a daily basis, things are turning out to be worse for a lot of Australians cricketers who flew to country for the 2021 season of the Indian Premier League but now wish to leave the tournament and return home to their families and loved ones.
Back in April, it was confirmed that the numerous Australian cricketers including Adam Zampa and Kane Richardson wanted to fly back to their home country due to reasons such as bio-bubble fatigue and the risk to their health given the rampant COVID-19 outbreak in India.
Adam Zampa & Kane Richardson are returning to Australia for personal reasons and will be unavailable for the remainder of #IPL2021. Royal Challengers Bangalore management respects their decision and offers them complete support.#PlayBold #WeAreChallengers pic.twitter.com/NfzIOW5Pwl
However, the Australian government had established that since the cricketers had gone to play franchise cricket and were not on national duty, the country would not make arrangements for their travel and that they would have to make their plans on their own. So, Zampa and Richardson found a loophole in the travel plans and reached Melbourne via Doha.
With the hopes of corking such issues, Australia has shut down such loopholes and others including Singapore and Kuala Lumpur and has now made it illegal for their own cricketers to return home.
The country’s government has shut transit flight routes via Doha, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur.https://t.co/kJV9HOjrga— scroll.in (@scroll_in) May 1, 2021
Australia's Health Minister Greg Hunt in a statement said, "The government does not make these decisions lightly. However, it is critical the integrity of the Australian public health and quarantine systems is protected and the number of COVID-19 cases in quarantine facilities is reduced to a manageable level."
"Failure to comply with an emergency determination under the Biosecurity Act, 2015 may incur a civil penalty of 300 penalty units, five years' imprisonment or both. The CMO will consider the epidemiology in India and likely impacts on Australia's quarantine capacity, and provide a further expert assessment of the public health risk to Australia to inform a proportionate response,” the statement further said.
After nine straight days of 300,000+ Covid cases daily, India has now moved 400,00+. The US has banned travel from India; Australia will jail for 5 years if someone arrives from India. Only 7million had gone to Haridwar's Kumbh Mela in Apil to take a dip in the Ganges.— Ashok Swain (@ashoswai) May 1, 2021
According to media reports, 34 members of the Australian cricket community are in India at the moment which includes 12 players, 11 members of the coaching staff, four commentators, two umpires and five support staff members.
Some of the big names include players like Glenn Maxwell, Steve Smith, and David Warner while legends such as Ricky Ponting and David Hussey are involved in the coaching department.May 3, 2021
In a recent report it as been confirmed that two members of the Kolkata Knight Riders franchise, namely Varun Chakravarthy and Sandeep Warrier were found COVID-positive and as a result their teammates, including Pat Cummins remain in isolation. Their match against Royal Challengers Bangalore has been rescheduled as well.