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India suspends scheduled international commercial passenger flights until further notice

The Director-General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has decided to keep scheduled international commercial passenger flights suspended till further notice. The suspension was extended until February 28 on January 19.

The news: The DGCA also indicated that the limitations will not apply to international all-cargo operations or flights under air-bubble arrangements in a February 28 announcement.

  • India has air transport bubbles with Afghanistan, Australia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Canada, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Germany, Iraq, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Maldives, Mauritius, Nepal, Netherlands, Nigeria, Oman, Qatar, Russia, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Seychelles, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Tanzania, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, US and Uzbekistan.
  • To prevent and manage the spread of Covid-19, India has imposed a scheduled international passenger flight embargo since March 23, 2020.

The backstory: The DGCA declared on November 26, 2021 that India would resume scheduled international passenger flights on December 15, 2021, subject to certain conditions.

  • On December 1, 2021, however, the DGCA reversed its decision, stating that it is “closely watching” the situation arising from the Covid-19’s Omicron variant, and that a final decision on the resumption of normal international flights will be made after consultation with stakeholders.
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