New Delhi: As airports round the country are getting ready for the resumption of domestic flights from Monday, there is a strong possibility that international flights will resume by July.
Union minister for civil aviation Hardeep Singh Puri said Saturday that if the novel coronavirus infection rates are within control, then the government will consider restarting international flights by June end or July.
“I am fully hopeful that before August or September, we will try to start a good percentage of international civil aviation operations, if not complete international operations. We must have a more ambitious goal (regarding international flights). Why not start them by mid-June or June-end or in July,” Puri said during a Facebook live session.
The minister conceded that several states are reluctant to receive even passengers in view of the Covid-19 pandemic.While some have questioned the necessity of restarting domestic flights so soon and others have suggested that the operations be delayed by two-three days, none of the states have submitted a request in writing, he said.
With the spike in Covid-19 cases weighing heavily upon it, states like Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Goa have expressed concerns over resumption of domestic flights from May 25.
According to information, the Maharashtra government has refused to allow domestic flights as of now, saying lockdown rules are in place till May 31. It has also asked for some more time to prepare SOPs while accusing the Centre of “arbitrarily” deciding date for the resumption of flight operations.
Goa has insisted on allowing only corona negative persons in the state. The state’s health minister Vishwajit Rane said he has requested the civil aviation ministry to permit coronavirus antibody testing of passengers upon arrival to help identify asymptomatic patients at the airport itself to avoid community transmission, he said.
At least 15 flights are scheduled to arrive at the Goa International Airport in Dabolim on Monday....