DGCA has further extended the suspension of scheduled international commercial passenger flights till April 30, 2021. However, the civil aviation authority in a circular goes on to mention that the restriction will not be applicable for flights specifically approved by DGCA and international all-cargo operations.
DGCA in the circular also mentions that international scheduled flights may be allowed on selected routes by the competent authority on a case-to-case basis.
India currently has established air bubble arrangements with 27 countries and the Vande Bharat missions are still going strong. The civil aviation minister, Hardeep Singh Puri, had recently tweeted,
“Vande Bharat Mission soars around the world. More than 67.7 lakh facilitated since 6 March 2020. 27 air bubbles continue to provide smooth passage for repatriation & International travel. World’s largest mission of hope & happiness.”
In February, DGCA had extended the suspension of international commercial passenger flight services till March 31. Puri has also hinted that India would be working on establishing air travel bubble arrangements with more countries.
Indian suspended scheduled international passenger services from March 23 due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but has been operating special repatriation flights under the Vande Bharat Mission and has also entered into bilateral air bubble arrangements with 27 countries.
Currently, India has an air travel bubble with USA, UK, France, Germany, Canada, Maldives, UAE, Qatar, Bahrain, Nigeria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Japan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Kuwait, Nepal, Netherlands, Oman, Rwanda, Tanzania, Ukraine, Russia, Seychelles and Uzbekistan.