An Air India aircraft
An Air India aircraft|File photo

149 flights to bring home 30,000 stranded Indians in second phase of Vande Bharat

NetIndian News Network

New Delhi, May 14, 2020

India will operate 149 flights to bring back more than 30,000 stranded Indians from 31 countries in the second phase of the Vande Bharat mission during the lockdown imposed to contain the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

In the first phase of the mission, which began on May 7, national carrier Air India and its subsidiary Air India Express were to operate 64 flights to 12 countries to bring back about 14,800 Indians stranded there when the Government imposed a lockdown for 21 days from March 25 and then extended it for 19 days up to May 3 and then again for two weeks till May 17.

The flights in the first phase brought back Indians from the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, Oman, United Kingdom, Singapore, Malaysia, United States, Bangladesh and the Philippines.

Even as the first phase is still going on, the Government has decided to launch the second phase of the mission from May 16 to 22.

"In the 2nd phase the numbers are being doubled. 30,000 more Indians will return from 31 countries on 149 flights," Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said on Twitter.

He said Phase 2 would also include flights from Armenia, Australia, Belarus, Canada, France, Georgia, Germany, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Nepal, Nigeria, Russia, Tajikistan, Thailand and Ukraine.

"149 flights in 2nd phase of Mission Vande Bharat will not wait for remaining flights of 1st phase to get over. The two phases will be operational simultaneously & seamlessly. There will be no gap between them.

"We remain committed to bring back our stranded & distressed citizens," Puri said.

Before launching the first phase of flights, the Government had said that the returning passengers would have to be medically screened on arrival and then sent to the appropriate quarantine facilities before they can resume normal lives in India.

In the first seven days of the operation, the flights brought back Indians to ten states. The government had said at that time that flights to more states could be planned once facilities to receive and quarantine the returning passengers are in place.

The flights are being organised on a payment-basis and all the passengers will have to pay the prescribed amount to the airline.

"Flyers have to pay for these services & will undergo a paid 14-day quarantine in their destination states. All prescribed preventive measures will be taken," Puri said.

The 149 flights will include 31 flights to Kerala, 22 to Delhi, 17 to Karnataka, 16 to Telangana, 14 to Gujarat, 13 to Rajasthan, 9 to Andhra Pradesh, 7 to Punjab, 6 to Bihar, 6 to Uttar Pradesh, 3 to Odisha, 2 to Chandigarh, and one flight each to Jammu and Kashmir, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh.

According to the information put out by the Ministry of Civil Aviation, the 149 flights in Phase 2 will include:

-- One flight from Armenia (Yerevan-Jaipur-Kochi)

-- Seven flights from Australia (Sydney-Amritsar, Sydney-Ahmedabad, Sydney-Delhi, Melbourne-Bengaluru, Melbourne-Kochi, Melbourne-Amritsar, Melbourne-Hyderabad)

-- Five flights from Canada (Vancouver-Amritsar-Delhi, Vancouver-Bengaluru-Hyderabad, Toronto-Amritsar-Delhi, Toronto-Ahmedabad-Jaipur, Toronto-Bengaluru-Hyderabad)

-- One flight from Japan (Tokyo-Mumbai)

-- One flight from Nigeria (Lagos-Delhi)

-- One flight from Italy (Rome-Kochi)

-- Two flights from France (Paris-Delhi-Ahmedabad, Paris-Bengaluru-Kochi)

-- Two flights from Germany (Frankfurt-Bengaluru, Frankfurt-Delhi)

-- Two flights from Ireland (Dublin-Bengaluru-Kochi, Dublin-Delhi-Vijayawada)

-- One flight from Nepal (Kathmandu-Nepal)

-- Six flights from Russia (Moscow-Delhi, Moscow-Ahmedabad, Moscow-Lucknow, Moscow-Jaipur, Moscow-Kannur, Moscow-Gaya)

-- Seven flights from Kazakhstan (Almaty-Jaipur, Karaganda-Jaipur (3), Nur-sultan-Jaipur, Nur-sultan-Gaya, Nur-sultan-Lucknow)

-- Six flights from Ukraine (Kyiv-Delhi, Kyiv-ochi, Kyiv-Lucknow, Kyiv-Jaipur, Kyiv-Ahmedabad, Kyiv-Chandigarh)

-- Four flights fom Kyrgyzstan (Bishkek-Gaya, Bishkek-Jaipur, Bishkek-Hyderabad, Bishkek-Delhi)

-- Two flights from Tajikistan (Dushanbe-Kannnur, Dushanbe-Jaipur)

-- One flight from Belarus (Minsk-Ahmedabad)

-- One flight from Georgia (Tbilisi-Ahmedabad-Jaipur)

-- One flight from Thailand (Bangkok-Delhi)

-- Five flights from Indonesia (Jakarta-Delhi, Jakarta-Bengaluru-Kochi, Jakarta-Ahmedabad, Jakarta-Bengaluru, Jakarta-Hyderabad)

-- Five flights from UK (London-Kochi-Vijayawada, London-Varanasi-Gaya, London-Ahmedabad-Indore, London-Delhi-Jaipur, Birmingham-Amritsar)

-- Seven flights from USA (Washington DC-Bengaluru-Ahmedabad, San Francisco-Bengaluru-Hyderabad, San Francisco-Kochi-Ahmedabad, New York-Delhi-Chandiigarh, New York-Bengaluru, Chicago-Ahmedabad-Hyderabad, Chicago-Delhi-Bhubaneswar)

-- Six flights from Saudi Arabia (Dammam-Bengaluru-Hyderabad, Dammam-Kochi, Jeddah-Vijayawada-Hyderabad, Riyadh-Kozhikode, Riyadh-Kannur, Riyadh-Hyderabad-Vijayawada)

-- Two flights from Bahrain (Manama-Hyderabad, Manama-Trivandrum)

-- One flight from Bangladesh (Dhaka-Srinagar)

-- Three flights from Singapore (Singapore-Hyderabad, Singapore-Amritsar, Singapore-Ahmedabad-Lucknow)

-- Five flights from Philippines (Manila-Jaipur, Manila-Visakhapatnam, Manila-Kochi, Manila-Bengaluru, Cebu-Hyderabad)

-- Four flights from Malaysia (Kuala Lumpur-Lucknow-Amritsar, Kuala Lumpur-Kochi-Bhubaneswar, Kuala Laumpur-Bengaluru-Ahmedabad, Kuala Lumpur-Visakhapatnam-Delhi)

-- 11 flights from UAE (Abu Dhabi-Trivandrum, Abu Dhabi-Kochi, Abu Dhabi-Kannur, Abu Dhabi-Visakhapatnam, Dubai-Bhubaneswar, Dubai-Mangalore, Dubai-Kochi, Dubai-Trivandrum, Dubai-Kozhikode, Dubai-Delhi, Dubai-Hyderabad)

-- Eight flights from Oman (Muscat-Trivandrum, Muscat-Bengaluru, Muscat-Hyderabad, Muscat-Kannur, Muscat-Delhi, Muscat-Kochi, Muscat-Gaya, Salalah-Kozhikode)

-- Three flights from Kuwait (Kuwait-Tirupati, Kuwait-Kannnur, Kuwait-Trivandrum)

-- Six flights from Qatar (Doha-Kannur, Doha-Kochi, Doha-Hyderabad, Doha-Bengaluru, Doha-Gaya, Doha-Visakhapatnam)