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Domestic flights suspended in India: no domestic passenger flights since March 25 | India Business News


NEW DELHI: Scheduled domestic passenger flights will cease to operate from 11:59 pm on Tuesday until midnight on March 31. The decision comes when blockades to prevent the spread of the coronavirus in the states have made it difficult for everyone, passengers, crew and people who work at airports, to travel between the city and the airport.

India has already stopped scheduling international flights for a week, as of now, since March 22. From Tuesday to Wednesday at midnight no passenger flight is allowed in India. Only cleared cargo and evacuation flights will be permitted on a case-by-case basis in the retail space.

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“Domestic business commercial airline operations will cease operations beginning at midnight, that is, at 11:59 pm (India time) on March 24. Airlines must plan operations to land at their destination before 11:59 p.m. on March 24. “The restrictions will not apply only to flights carrying cargo,” the aviation ministry said.

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Blockades in various cities make it difficult for passengers, crew and staff of airlines, airports, health departments and others to move between airports and their homes / hotels.

On Sunday, the Delhi government shutdown order sought to stop all domestic and international flights and asked the President of the Indian Airports Authority (AAI) to ensure strict compliance with them. But the Center argued that aviation is an essential service and that Delhi airport will continue to operate for domestic flights.

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On Tuesday, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee asked Prime Minister Modi to “stop all flights arriving in West Bengal with immediate effect.” She wrote: “… we are seriously concerned that the government of India still allows the operation of flights causing a major violation of the closure … Therefore, I would ask you to make the necessary arrangements to issue the necessary instructions to stop all flights arriving in West Bengal with immediate effect so that the source of the spread of the infection is effectively contained and the blockade in the state is implemented with true letter and spirit “. The Bengal shutdown begins at 5pm on Monday.

However, Delhi on Monday, the first day of the shutdown without public transport services, including the Delhi Metro, private buses, taxis, and auto-rickshaws, saw traffic jams at UP’s sealed borders (leading to Noida and Ghaziabad. ) and Haryana (Gurgaon and Faridabad). Passengers, crew, and others who need to travel between the IGI airport and their homes come from all over NCR and face many problems.

With several states and their capitals in a situation of blockade that make it difficult for anyone (passengers, crew and other people working at airports) to move, the government has decided to stop domestic flights from Wednesday at midnight.

Other countries are also stopping passenger flights. The UAE, for example, will not allow any passenger flights, except those for special evacuation, from March 25.

Times of India