New Delhi: The airlines across the country are all set to resume operations from Monday after a gap of nearly two months when the nationwide lockdown was announced by PM Modi. Also Read - 'A Long Day of Hard Negotiations,' Says Hardeep Singh Puri as India Gets Ready to Resume Domestic Flights
However, the airports in Kolkata and Bagdogra in West Bengal and Vizag and Vijayawada in Andhra Pradesh will not handle any domestic flights on Monday while the ones at Mumbai, Chennai and Hyderabad will deal with a reduced number of domestic services. Also Read - Fighting COVID-19 And Amphan Simultaneously, Bengal to Resume Domestic Flight Operations From May 28
Just the day before the resumption of domestic commercial passenger flights across the country, multiple meetings were held at the Civil Aviation Ministry among various stakeholders as several states expressed their reluctance to deal with so many incoming flyers amid the coronavirus pandemic. Also Read - Vijayawada, Visakhapatnam Airports to Resume Domestic Flights on May 26; West Bengal From May 28
After holding marathon meetings with a number of states, it was decided on Sunday evening that Kolkata and Bagdogra will each handle just 20 flights per day from Thursday and these two airports in West Bengal will not handle any flights between Monday and Wednesday.
“It has been a long day of hard negotiations with various state governments to recommence civil aviation operations in the country,” Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said on Twitter on Sunday night.
He added that except Andhra Pradesh which will start on May 26 and West Bengal on May 28, domestic flights will recommence across the country from Monday.
As per the latest updates, the Hyderabad airport will deal with only 30 domestic flights per day from Monday. Moreover, 50 per cent of these will be departures and remaining would be arrivals.
Apart from Hyderabad, there will be no domestic services at the Vijaywada and the Vizag airports on Monday, and they will be handling only 20 per cent of the pre-lockdown flights from Tuesday onwards.
“As per the request of the state govt, operations in Andhra Pradesh will recommence on a limited scale from 26 May,” Puri said.
He said that for Tamil Nadu, there will be max 25 arrivals in Chennai but there’s no limit on the number of departures. “For other airports in Tamil Nadu flights will operate as in other parts of the country,” he added.
The airlines, which had opened their bookings on domestic services 2-3 days ago, will have to cancel a significant number of flights to these cities where the central government curtailed operations on Sunday.
The Mumbai airport, which is considered as India’s second busiest airport, will handle only 50 flights per day from Monday, and all other airports in Maharashtra will deal with just one-third of the pre-lockdown domestic air traffic.
Meanwhile, different state governments have issued SOPs and guidelines for air travellers to their respective states, including 14-day home quarantine from the date of arrival.
The standard operating procedure (SOP) issued by Kerala government said symptomatic persons will be sent to either COVID Care Centre or Hospital.
As per the guidelines, all passengers had to register their details with the Covid-19 Jagratha web portal.
On the other hand, Goa will reopen its airport on Monday but has decided to keep the flight operations at the minimum level.
Chief Minister Pramod Sawant said on Sunday that 13 flights are scheduled to land on the first day of the partial resumption of the operations amidst the coronavirus-induced lockdown.