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Flight operations resume after Notam withdrawal (Roundup)


IANS New Delhi
Commercial flight operations at many airports across North India, interrupted following air space restrictions by the Indian Air Force (IAF) as a precautionary measure, resumed after the withdrawal of Notam.
The operations, restricted from early Wednesday, were resumed after withdrawal of the "Notice to Airmen" (Notam) issued by the Air Traffic Control (ATC) under the directions of the IAF.
The development comes a day after IAF jets bombed the biggest training camp of the Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) outfit in Balakot, Pakistan, on Tuesday. The IAF on Wednesday chased away intruding Pakistani fighter jets in the J&K's Nowshera sector.
According to reports, Pakistan has banned Indian aircraft from using its airspace and that Pakistan's Air Traffic Control (ATC) has banned any aircraft from flying below 32,000 feet.
According to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), the operational restrictions were removed early evening.
No commercial operations took place during the duration of Notam at these airports. Several flights had either been diverted or put on hold.
The Notam also impacted traffic at the national capital's IGI airport with 47 cancellations -- 25 departures and 22 arrivals. Also, four flights destined for other airports were diverted to Delhi.
"Due to airspace restrictions, flights to and from Amritsar, Srinagar, Chandigarh and Jammu are on hold. Customers are requested to check flight status before starting their journey to the airport," Air Vistara had tweeted.
With the opening of the airspace, commercial flights have resumed to Jammu, Leh, Srinagar, Amritsar, Pathankot, Dharamsala, Kullu and Shimla.
Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu tweeted: "Reviewed the current airspace restrictions with member (ANS), AAI in view of the current situation. We are working out modalities so that air passengers are least inconvenienced. All stakeholders were kept informed."
The Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha said the ministry is strictly following instructions from the Air Force.
On their part, the airlines said they have either refunded passengers or re-booked them on other available flights.
A SpiceJet spokesperson said: "Passengers whose flights were cancelled today (February 27) due to airspace restrictions have been provided a full refund or have been re-booked on alternate flights of their choice at no extra charge."
National carrier Air India said inbound and outbound flights from the US and Europe for Delhi are being re-routed through Ahmedabad and Mumbai. "Flights from the US and Europe are being re-routed via Dubai and Sharjah and will land into India with a delay," the airline said in a statement.
"No flights are cancelled. There will be only an increase in the flying time," Air India said.

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First Published: Feb 27 2019 | 10:34 PM IST

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