India bans all international flights until Aug 31st

India bans all international flights until Aug 31st

While keeping a check on pandemic situations in the country, DGCA has ruled out the extension of a ban on international flights till August 31st. 

The ban on overseas flights has been extended by the Indian government till August 31. The restriction on worldwide scheduled aircraft to and from India was set to terminate on July 31, according to an earlier notification.

After a 16-month hiatus, the prohibition on scheduled international flights was set to lift on July 30.

The civil aviation watchdog said dedicated freight flights and flights under bilateral air bubble pacts with designated nations will continue to operate.

In its circular, the DGCA did note out that the competent authority may authorise international scheduled flights on certain routes on a “case-by-case” basis. Due to the Covid-19 epidemic, international passenger flights have been stopped in India since March 23 of last year.

International freight planes were allowed to fly, but the prohibition on commercial international flights was prolonged. Since May 2020, special international flights have been running as part of the Vande Bharat Mission, and bilateral ‘air bubble’ agreements with chosen governments have been in place since July 2020.

Afghanistan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Canada, Ethiopia, France, Germany, Iraq, Japan, Kenya, Kuwait, the Maldives, Nepal, the Netherlands, Nigeria, Oman, Qatar, Rwanda, Seychelles, Tanzania, Ukraine, the UAE, the UK, Uzbekistan, and the United States are among the countries with which India has bilateral air pocket agreements.

“On a case-by-case basis, the competent authority may authorize international scheduled flights on certain routes,” the DGCA circular stated. Due to the Covid-19 epidemic, scheduled international passenger services have been stopped in India from March 23, 2020.

India has air bubble agreements with 24 nations, including the United States, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, Kenya, Bhutan, and France.

Covid-19 continues to disrupt the resurgence of the aviation sector, as well as the travel and tourist industry since cases continue to grow in various regions of the world, despite the United States, the United Kingdom, and other European Union (EU) states vaccinating their population at a quicker rate.

As governments throughout the world strive to contain the spread of Covid-19, breakthrough infections among people who have been fully vaccinated continue to stymie efforts for a full-scale reintroduction. Domestic flights in India are permitted to operate with a limited number of passengers.

During the April-June timeframe, while India was combating the second wave of Covid-19, domestic air transport dropped by about 53%.

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