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Asia India

India likely to postpone resumption of international flights in wake of Omicron threat

Civil Aviation ministry watching situation closely, to notify effective date in due course



Image Credit: Bloomberg

Dubai: The resumption of commercial international flights to and from India, which was tentatively scheduled for December 15, is likely to be postponed.

A note from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation on Wednesday said: "In view of the evolving global scenario with the emergence of new Variants of Concern, the situation is being watched closely in consultation with all stakeholders and an appropriate decision indicating the effective date of resumption of scheduled commercial international passenger services shall be notified in due course".

Earlier, India had decided to allow resumption of scheduled commercial international passenger services from December 15.

However, the government said there will be a calibrated resumption of operations from the countries recognised as "at risk" by the Union Health Ministry.

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There are more than 10 countries in the "at risk" list, including countries in Europe, South Africa, Brazil, Bangladesh, Botswana and China, among others.

Passenger air services were suspended in late March 2020 due to the nationwide lockdown to check the spread of Covid-19. While domestic flight services resumed from May 25, 2020, international flight services were only maintained through bilateral 'Bubble Agreements'.

India has air bubble pacts with 28 countries.