NEW DELHI: The Government of India (GoI) has extended the ban on international commercial flights till July 31, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) said in a circular on Wednesday.
The ban on scheduled commercial overseas flights was supposed to end on June 30 – after a gap of nearly 15 months.
Dedicated cargo flights, flights under the bilateral air bubble pacts with select countries will continue to operate, the civil aviation watchdog said.
“In partial modification of circular dated 26-06-2020, the competent authority has further extended the validity of circular issued on the subject cited above regarding Scheduled International commercial passenger services to/from India till 2359 hrs 1ST of 31st July, 2021,” the DGCA circular said.
Restrictions on scheduled international passenger flights to/from India extended till July 31st, 2021: Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) pic.twitter.com/tYCv5P80Oi
— ANI (@ANI) June 30, 2021
“However, international scheduled flights may be allowed on selected routes by the competent authority on case to case basis,” the DGCA circular read.
Scheduled international passenger services had been suspended in India since March 23, 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, special international flights have been operating under the “Vande Bharat Mission” since May last year, and under bilateral “air bubble” arrangements with selected countries since July.
Under an air bubble pact between two countries, special international flights can be operated by their airlines between their territories.
However, international travel remains muted worldwide as new variants of COVID-19 continue to emerge.