New Delhi: After a successful evacuation procedure of nearly 6037 stranded citizens from across 12 foreign countries, India announced on Tuesday that it is all set for the second phase of the grand Vande Bharat Mission operated by state-run Air India and Air India Express. Also Read - Coronavirus: Amid Surge in Cases in Capital, Delhi Government Issues New SOPs For COVID Hospitals | Read Here

“The second phase of Vande Bharat Mission will be launched from 16-22 May. It will bring back Indians from 31 countries. 149 flights including feeder flights will be deployed,” an official source said. Also Read - Rafael Nadal Won't 'Travel to New York Today' For US Open Unless It's Extremely Safe

Notably, as part of the Vande Bharat Mission, which is deemed as one of the largest expatriation exercise done by any country, Air India and its subsidiary Air India Express have already operated 31 inbound flights and there are 33 more to go. Between May 7 and May 14, the two carriers are scheduled to operate total 64 flights in 12 countries, including the UAE, the UK, the US, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, Bangladesh, Bahrain, Kuwait and Oman. Also Read - Unlock 1, Day 5 LIVE updates: 20 Delhi Metro Staff Staying in Delhi-NCR Test COVID-19 Positive

The government is constantly taking care of the health and hygiene of staff and passengers while organising these special flights and only asymptomatic passengers are being allowed to travel.

India has been under lockdown since March 25 to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus, which has infected more than 70,000 people and killed around 2,290 people in the country so far.