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Sunday, June 26, 2022

Biman to restart Bangladesh-India flights from Sunday

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Biman Bangladesh Airlines will resume Bangladesh-India air bubble flights on the Dhaka-Kolkata-Dhaka route from September 5 and the Dhaka-Delhi-Dhaka route three days later.

The flights will restart within the air bubble agreed between the two countries before the resumption of scheduled international passenger flights, reports UNB.

The national flag carrier will operate flights on the Dhaka-Kolkata-Dhaka route two days per week (Tuesday and Thursday) and two days per week (Sunday and Wednesday) on the Dhaka-Delhi-Dhaka route, according to Tahera Khondoker, deputy general manager (public relations), of Biman.

On September 2, the Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh (CAAB) accepted the Indian civil aviation ministry’s proposal to resume Bangladesh-India air bubble flights on September 4.

Also, it accepted the proposal of resumption of air bubble flights with “seven frequencies.”However, a proposal of allocation of 10 frequencies is in place for consideration.

“Frequencies” simply denotes the number of flights to be included under the bubble each week.

Under the present sevenfrequencies arrangement, India has informed Bangladesh that three of its operators have been allocated the flights each week -threefor SpiceJet, and two each for Air India and Indigo.

What Biman have announced so far would indicate Bangladesh has some frequencies left over. Will the government bring in the private sector to fill those, as Delhi has?

Irrespective of the Covid-19 vaccination, any passenger travelling from India will have to complete a 14-day strict home quarantine.

All other related provisions, including the requirement of mandatory RT-PCR test, would apply to such passengers as mentioned in the Air Transportation Circular issued on August 16, which may be amended from time to time, according to CAAB.

However, the carriage of passengers can be restricted to 90% of the total seating capacity of the aircraft used, it said.

In addition to the requirement to the category of passengers, suggested in its previous letter issued on August 4, CAAB proposed including “passengers with business visa” – namely to help airlines crew to travel to India for simulator training.

On August 29, the Indian government extended its suspension on international scheduled commercial passenger flights to and from India till September 30.

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