Airlines have been allowed to increase domestic flight operations to 45 per cent capacity from the existing 33 per cent. The civil aviation ministry has asked Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) to prepare the new schedule with additional routes under the new arrangement.
The decision has been taken after a review of the current status of domestic scheduled operations as compared to the demand for air travel, according to a circular by Ministry of Civil Aviation.
Domestic flight operations were reopened on May 25 after a hiatus of two months. All flights were suspended in view of the nationwide lockdown to contain the coronavirus pandemic imposed on March 25. Centre had limited flight operations at 33 per cent capacity. Airlines, however, have been reportedly operating on 25 per cent capacity only.
The order comes close on the heels of DGCA announcement that international scheduled commercial flights will remain suspended till July 15. However, international scheduled flights might be allowed to operate on selected routes, the aviation regulator had noted in a circular on Friday.
Union Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri had said last week that international flight operations could be resumed when the domestic traffic would reach about 50-60 per cent and other countries would open up to international traffic without present conditionalities.
"We can start regular international flights when our domestic traffic reaches about 50-60 per cent and other countries open up to international traffic without present conditionalities," Puri had tweeted.
In the past one month since resuming domestic flights, more than 18.92 lakh passengers have travelled on 21,316 flights, the Union Aviation Minister informed in a tweet today.