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London-Delhi flight ticket to cost Rs 50,000: Govt on evacuating Indians

On arrival from abroad, all passengers will be screened and put under quarantine for a period of 14 days as a COVID-19 precautionary measure, Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said

Lockdown | Hardeep Singh Puri | Aviation ministry

BS Web Team & PTI  |  New Delhi 

The closure of Pakistan airspace is another factor as it has pushed up operating costs for airlines
India plans to evacuate millions of its citizens stranded abroad from May 7.

Air India will operate 64 flights from May 7 to May 13 to bring back around 15,000 Indian nationals stranded abroad amid the COVID-19-induced lockdown, Civil Aviation Minister said on Tuesday.

The minister, while addressing a virtual press conference, said private Indian airlines may join the repatriation effort after May 13.

Those availing the repatriation flights will be charged, Puri said.

A passenger on a London-Delhi flight will be charged Rs 50,000 and on a Dhaka-Delhi flight Rs 12,000, the aviation minister said. One-way fare from the Gulf countries such as Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Doha to Kochi, Kerala range from Rs 15,000 to Rs 16,000. A ticket for flights from the United States to India has been priced at Rs 1,00,000, reported.

On arrival from abroad, all passengers will be screened and put under quarantine for a period of 14 days as a COVID-19 precautionary measure, Puri said.

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These 64 flights would be conducted by Air India and its subsidiary Air India Express to repatriate Indians from 12 countries such as the UAE, the UK, the US, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, Bangladesh, Bahrain, Kuwait and Oman.

India will conduct 10 flights to the UAE, seven flights each to the US and the UK, five flights to Saudi Arabia, five flights to Singapore and two flights to Qatar to repatriate Indian nationals between May 7 and May 13, the minister said.

During this time period, India will also conduct seven flights each to Malaysia and Bangladesh, five flights each to Kuwait and Philippines, two flights each to Oman and Bahrain, Puri said.

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India has been under since March 25 to curb the spread of the novel All commercial passenger flights have been suspended for this period.

The first and second phase of in India was from March 25 to April 14 and April 15 to May 3, respectively. The third phase began from May 4 and would end on May 17.

Whenever the government resumes commercial passenger flights, it would be done in a graded manner, Puri said.

The novel has infected more than 46,400 people and killed around 1,560 people in India till now.

First Published: Tue, May 05 2020. 19:01 IST