"And what is our government suggesting: that Australians who get sick in India must take their chances with Indian hospitals that are short of even oxygen, when the taxes of these citizens helped to pay for Australian hospitals at home that could save them?" The ban expires on May 15, but could be renewed.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has dismissed accusations of racism. "The ban has been implemented on the basis of advice from health officials", Morrison told the Sydney-based radio station 2GB in an interview on Monday.
"There's no politics or ideology in a pandemic".
Over the weekend, the Telegraph reported that Britain secretly allowed AstraZeneca to use its United Kingdom supply chain to produce vaccines for key ally Australia in return for access to 10 millions doses from India.
From Monday, people who have been in India within the previous fortnight before their intended arrival in Australia will face a A$66,600 (NZ$71,113) fine, as well as five years' imprisonment for entering the country.
Numerous countries, including the USA, have restricted travel from India as the country's COVID crisis deepens, but Australia has gone a step further. "Personally, I'm very devastated with this announcement".More news: Ontario reports fewest new COVID-19 cases in over a month
"The commission is approaching the Australian Government directly with its concerns".
Federal Greens Senator Mehreen Faruqi wrote on Twitter that the measures were "absolutely horrific and racist". "I can't believe we would impose such a travel ban on white Australians fleeing from, say, England", Andrew Bolt added.
Australia's main medical association on Tuesday said the government should immediately reverse its "mean-spirited" order and put in place a plan to ensure the safe return of Australians from India.
"There are different standards at play here depending on which part of the world you're coming from".
"Indian-Australians are seeing this as a racist policy because we are being treated different than people from other countries who have had similar waves of infection like the USA, the United Kingdom and Europe".
"By the time October comes, I think 75-80 percent of Indians will be vaccinated and a lot of them will have recovered from the disease, they might not need a vaccination as the antibodies will be high".More news: NY to Ease Capacity Restrictions on Broadway Beginning May 19
Legal experts have also raised concerns that the temporary ban violates worldwide law.
The committee also pointed to article 12 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) that states "no one shall be arbitrarily deprived of the right to enter his own country".
"We're all just working to do what's right for the health interests of Australians".
The country has successfully operated a policy of mandatory, 14-day quarantine for all global arrivals - mostly conducted in hotels.
But that system has come under increasing strain as the virus has jumped from quarantine facilities and caused a series of outbreaks in the largely unvaccinated community.
Western Australia reported three cases over the weekend after a quarantine hotel security guard and two house-mates tested positive for COVID-19.More news: North Korea defectors defy South to launch anti-Kim leaflets