1,562 stranded Nepalis return home through repatriation flights



A total of 1,562 Nepalis were repatriated from various countries today. According to Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA), Nepalis from six destinations were repatriated through flights conducted by Nepal Airlines Corporation (NAC), Himalaya Airlines and other foreign airlines.

Among the total flights three flights from the United Arab Emirates and one flight each from Kuwait, Malaysia, Bangladesh, Saudi Arabia and Qatar were conducted today.

As per TIA, the national flag carrier repatriated 247 Nepalis from Saudi Arabia, 149 from Qatar, 261 from UAE and 245 from Bangladesh today. Likewise, Himalaya Airlines brought back 153 Nepalis from the UAE and 156 passengers from Malaysia. Meanwhile, one repatriation flight from the UAE was conducted by Fly Dubai which brought home 185 Nepalis from Dubai.

Similarly, 166 Nepalis were repatriated from Kuwait via Jazeera Airways.

Meanwhile, a wide-body aircraft of NAC has departed for Bahrain today and will return on Monday. Starting from June 11 the government has been evacuating Nepalis who were stranded in different countries and had been there for work or other purposes.

Amid this six domestic flights were also conducted today. According to TIA, an aircraft of Tara Air went to Lukla today carrying food items while a flight of Manang Air also flew to Lukla carrying a patient who was in Kathmandu for treatment.

Likewise, Manang Air conducted another flight to rescue a patient from Lukla today while Kailash Air conducted a flight to bring a patient from Sankhuwasabha.

Meanwhile, Manang Air and Buddha Air both conducted a flight each carrying passengers from Lukla.

The government has extended all flight restrictions till July 5. However, the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation (MoCTCA) is preparing to resume flights from August if the situation is brought under control by then. For the first phase of repatriation the government had prepared a list of 24,148 Nepalis across 30 different destinations who needed to be rescued urgently.

In coordination with embassies located in the respective countries and NAC, Himalaya Airlines and other foreign airline companies, repatriation flights are being conducted at present. The very first condition of repatriation flight is that every passenger must have a report of either PCR or RDT test which states that they are not infected with COV- ID-19 before booking the flight. Passengers who do not have a health certificate are not being repatriated.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on June 22, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.

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