Indian citizens stuck in Dhaka took off from the airport in a special Air India flight. Thousands of such stranded Indian citizens are returning home after the government announced the mission 'Vande Bharat' under which the government would be evacuating Indian citizens stranded in other countries amid the Coronavirus pandemic.
The Indian High Commission in Dhaka had earlier tweeted, "New Day, New Flight Home Our citizens bound for Delhi have reached the airport in Dhaka. Vande Bharat Mission will be taking them home today. 129 Passengers are booked for the Air India flight."
This is the second such flight carrying Indians from Bangladesh. On Friday, a flight carrying 167 passengers landed in Srinagar.
The Central government will be using flights and ships to bring back Indians stranded abroad and both, INS Jalashwa and INS Magar are equipped with proper PPE kits with medical and administrative support staff to provide care to people onboard. Many stranded Indians will also be brought back from countries such as the United Kingdom, the United States, Singapore, Bangladesh, the United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia among others.
Air India will operate flights from Riyadh, London, San Fransisco, Washington DC, Singapore between May 8 to 14. The cost of travel by air will have to be borne by passengers, the external affairs ministry said. Most flights with evacuated Indians will land in cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Kochi, and Chennai.
The MHA said that priority will be given to compelling cases in distress including migrant workers/labourers who have been laid off, short term visa holders faced with the expiry of visa, persons with medical emergencies/ pregnant women/ elderly, those required to return to India due to death of family member and students. The cost of travel, as specified by the MoCA and DMA will be borne by such travellers.
(with inputs from ANI)
(Image credits: twitter.com/ihcdhaka)