News By/Courtesy: Nikshetaa Jain | 25 May 2020 17:13pm IST


  • Announcement by Ministry of Civil Aviation
  • Guidelines issued by the Ministry
  • This move has been opposed by West Bengal and Maharashtra

On May 20, Hardeep Singh Puri announced that domestic operations would restart in India from May 25 in a controlled manner. Airport and travelers will be required to adhere to the detailed standard of procedure issued by the Ministry of Civil Aviation. This move has been welcomed by the airlines as it would revive the country’s economy and the revenue of the airlines.
The Ministry said that the airlines would have to adhere to the minimum and maximum limit on fares prescribed by the Ministry. Passengers would have to report at the airport two hours before the scheduled departure of the flight. Only one check-in bag would be allowed, and the airlines would not provide any meal services on the plane. Passengers are required to wear masks throughout the entire journey. Passengers staying in containment zones would not be allowed to travel. The passengers have to certify their health status through the Aarogya Setu app or a self-declaration form. Airports have been advised to maintain separate areas for isolation and testing of suspected passengers.
States such as West Bengal and Maharashtra have taken a stance against the resuming of flight operations. Mamata Banerjee, the Chief Minister of West Bengal, appealed to the Central government to deter flight operations in West Bengal due to destruction caused by cyclone Amphan. She has asked the Centre to give the state government a few days to prepare for resuming flight operations as the authorities are busy in relief and restoration work in the aftermath of the cyclone. Sources said that flight operations would begin from May 30 to Kolkata.
Maharashtra government stated that the transport of passengers to and from the airport would be difficult due to the non-availability of public transport in Mumbai. The government had written a letter to the Centre stating that there are too many containment zones in the city and more people cannot be allowed to move in there. Scanning of passengers and providing them quarantine facilities would be a significant problem considered the number of active cases in the entire state.
However, the Maharashtra government has announced that it would allow limited flights to operate from Mumbai. The state government has permitted 25 takeoffs and 25 landings. Only international transfer of passengers, medical emergencies, students, and cases on compassionate grounds would be allowed. The Chief Minister has emphasized on the fact that minimum domestic flight operations should be permitted in Maharashtra.
The above confusion between the Centre and the states is due to lack of the Centre’s consultation from states regarding resuming flight operations.

Section Editor: Pushpit Singh | 25 May 2020 17:52pm IST

Tags : #COVID 19, domestic flights

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