International Flights Status: India’s air travel authority, the Director-General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has extended the ban on scheduled international commercial flights to and from India till February 28.
The big news came via a circular from the DGCA stating that “the competent authority has decided to extend the suspension of scheduled international commercial passenger services to/from India till 2359 hrs IST of February 28, 2022.”
However, the restriction will not apply to international all-cargo operations and flights specifically approved by the DGCA.
Hence, the flights under the air bubble arrangement will not be affected. The rising Omicron cases in the country are a greater cause of concern for the authorities.
However, this time hospitalisation remains under control as the third Covid wave is already here.
It is worth noting that India has air transport bubbles with Afghanistan, Australia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Canada, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Germany, Iraq, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Maldives, Mauritius, Nepal, Netherlands, Nigeria, Oman, Qatar, Russia, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Seychelles, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Tanzania, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, US and Uzbekistan.
The existing agreements allow both-way air travel but under certain terms and conditions.
India suspends scheduled International Flights over Covid fear
In November last year, the government had planned to resume scheduled international flight operations but the emergence of the Omicron variant marred future plans.
India’s total Covid-19 cases tally rose to 3,79,01,241, which includes 8,961 cases of the Omicron variant. The figures are as per the Union Health Ministry data updated today.
Now, the active cases have increased to 18,31,000. This is the highest in 232 days.