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Govt Allows Airlines to Operate Maximum of 65 Percent Pre-Covid Domestic Flights

Image for representation. (Image source: IANS)

Image for representation. (Image source: IANS)

The carriers have been operating only 50 per cent of their pre-Covid domestic flights since June 1 in accordance with a May 28 order of the ministry. Before June 1, the cap was at 80 per cent.

Ministry of Civil Aviation has allowed domestic air carriers to operate 65 percent of its pre-covid schedule. The capping has been increased from 50 percent capacity on which airlines were operating since June 1 in accordance to May 28, after the surge in cases during second wave of COVID-19. Before June 1, airlines in India were operating at 80 percent capacity.

India banned all domestic and international flights from operating last March as the first cases of COVID-19 reached Indian shores. While International flights are still banned, domestic operations were allowed last May in a calibrated manner.

Starting with 33 percent, airlines reached 80 percent in December last year, and has been operating on the same cap since then, only to be be capped again at 50 percent and now, increased again to 65 percent of pre-covid summer schedule. The May 28 decision to bring down the cap from 80 to 50 per cent was taken "in view of the sudden surge in the number of active COVID-19 cases across the country, decrease in passenger traffic and the passenger load (occupancy rate) factor", the ministry had said.

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It issued a fresh order on Monday, wherein it modified the May 28 order stating that "50 per cent capacity may be read as 65 per cent capacity".

Monday's order also stated that the 65-per cent cap will be applicable till "July 31, 2021 or until further orders, whichever is earlier".

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first published:July 06, 2021, 08:43 IST