Dubai authorities have temporarily suspended all Air India Express flights for 15 days for allegedly carrying coronavirus positive patients to the UAE city twice.
The ban begins from Friday, September 18, and will be enforceable till October 2. Besides, the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority has also penalised Air India Express to bear all medical and quarantine expenditures of the COVID-19 positive patients who have been ferried to Dubai.
The authority has alleged that two coronavirus positive passengers were being flown to Dubai on two separate occasions despite their COVID-19 test reports being positive.
"You are aware of our previous intimation made to you by our letter dated September 2 for boarding a passenger with a coronavirus positive test result, who endangered the other passengers on board and also caused a serious health risk," the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority said in a letter to the airline.
It further stated that allowing the boarding of a COVID-19 positive patient was in breach of the laid down procedures pertaining to air travel to and from Dubai airports during the pandemic.
"Therefore, all operations of Air India Express to Dubai Airports are temporarily suspended, for a duration of 15 days, effective from 00:01 hrs on Friday 18th September 2020 until 23:59 hrs of 2nd October 2020," the authority said.
Meanwhile, in order to resume flights to Dubai, Air India has been asked to submit a detailed corrective action plan implemented in letter and spirit to prevent such incidents from occurring in the future.