494 domestic flights carrying 38,078 passengers operated in India on Thursday: Aviation minister
New Delhi: A total of 494 domestic flights, carrying 38,078 passengers, were operated on Thursday, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri on Friday.
Domestic flight operations resumed in the country on Monday after a gap of two months. All scheduled passenger flights were suspended from March 25 to May 24 due to the coronavirus-induced lockdown.
International passenger flights continue to remain suspended.
A total of 428 domestic flights, carrying 30,550 passengers, and 445 domestic services, carrying 62,641 flyers, were operated on Monday and Tuesday respectively. On Wednesday, 460 domestic flights, carrying 34,336 passengers, were operated.
In February this year, when the lockdown was not imposed, around 4.12 lakh passengers travelled daily through domestic flights in India, according to Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) data.
During the pre-lockdown period, Indian airports handled around 3,000 daily domestic flights, aviation industry sources said.
Airports in West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Telangana and Tamil Nadu have been allowed to handle a restricted number of daily flights as these states do not want a huge influx of flyers amid the rising number of COVID-19 cases.
While domestic services resumed in Andhra Pradesh on Tuesday, they restarted in West Bengal on Thursday.
Though domestic flight operations across the country began on May 25, they could not be restarted in Kolkata and Bagdogra as the state's machinery was involved in relief and restoration work after cyclone Amphan's devastation.
On Friday, Puri tweeted: "Figures for domestic flights for 28th May 2020 till 2359 hours: Day 4, Departures 494, 38,078 passengers handled, Arrivals 493, 38,389 passengers handled."
A total of 16 asymptomatic passengers on seven different flights, including 13 who travelled by IndiGo, have tested positive for COVID-19 since the resumption of domestic air services.
Two of the other three asymptomatic passengers who tested positive for the infection had travelled by Spicejet while one took a flight of Air India subsidiary Alliance Air.