The suspension of scheduled international commercial passenger flights to or from India has been extended till May 31. The international scheduled flights under select routes, however, will remain operational on a "case-to-case" basis, the director-general of civil aviation (DGCA) said on Friday.
"In partial modification of circular date 26-6-2020, the competent authority has further extended the validity of circular issued on the subject cited above regarding scheduled international commercial passenger services to or from India till 2359 hrs IST of 31st May 2021. The restriction shall not apply to international all-cargo operations and flights specifically approved by the DGCA," the DGCA circular stated.
Many countries including the US, UK, Kuwait, France and Canada have banned flights from India, citing COVID-19 cases and the "double mutant" virus being found in the country. Iran, Kuwait, Indonesia and UAE are the latest additions to this list of countries that have banned India from their citizens' travel lists.
Australia this week suspended all direct passenger flights from India for the next three weeks due to the unprecedented spike in COVID-19 cases, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said.
The suspension of international commercial flights comes as India continues to face the worst of the Covid-19 pandemic. India recorded 3,86,452 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday and 3,498 deaths, the health ministry data showed. A record 2,97,540 passengers were also discharged from hospitals in the last 24 hours, the health ministry data shows.