Domestic flights will resume gradually and calibrated: Hardeep Singh Puri

NEW DELHI: The government will soon decide when internal hours will resume, but each time that happens, the scale of operations will be much less than the level at which they stopped in late March.

Aviation Minister H S Puri, while giving details of the repatriation flights on Tuesday, said: “When we open the scheduled flights, it will be calibrated and gradual. If I take my neck out (to look at the crystals a little), it can reset to 25% (from what it stopped in late March) and gradually increase by 10% gradually. ”

India had stopped scheduling commercial flights, both domestic and international, on March 22 and 25. At that time, winter time was in force, which had approved 10,310 weekly by scheduled airlines, almost 1,500 daily flights. The crown pandemic has seriously impacted travel and in the last days of March at least 40% of these hours were reduced, which means that fewer than 900 national daily flights were operating when they were suspended.

We cannot open as it was a pre-flight suspension. If we open all flights, how will a person take the flight in a red zone? It has to be very calibrated, said Puri.

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The government will begin to consider charter applications once repatriation flights begin from Thursday and then stabilize. So far, about 2 lakh Indians stranded abroad have registered to return to the country. The first week of operations will bring back some 15,000 passengers on 64 flights from 12 countries, six of which are in the Gulf and the rest are the United States, the United Kingdom, Bangladesh, Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines.

We do not know the final numbers of Indians who wish to return. It may be 4 lakh but the final number will be known in a few days. How we increase operations after the first week depends on factors such as our first week experience; states' willingness to receive people flying on these flights in terms of quarantine centers and hospitals and the behavior of the virus, the minister said.