The fifth phase of the Government of India’s ”Vande Bharat” mission, aimed at evacuating Indian nationals stranded in various foreign countries owing to restrictions on air travel, will begin early next month, August 1.
“Under Vande Bharat Mission, we have already brought back more than 2.5 lakh stranded Indians from 53 commies,” Air India said in a statement.
“We will be soon announcing a host of additional flights under Vande Bharat Mission Phase 5 starting from 1st August 2020,” the national carrier said.
Flights for the USA, Canada, Qatar, Oman, UAE, Australia, Germany, Thailand, Singapore, UK, Germany, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, New Zealand, Philippines and several other countries have been planned under this phase.
Aviation minister Hardeep Singh Puri said, “Like we did earlier, more destinations and flights will be added as this phase progresses.”
Over 7.88 lakh Indians stranded abroad due to coronavirus pandemic have returned under Vande Bharat Mission till July 22, Ministry of External Affairs said.
The MEA spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said during a briefing last Thursday that some 1,03,976 Indians have returned from Nepal, Bhutan and Bangladesh through land borders.
The government started Vande Bharat Mission on May 7. The mission is in its fourth phase now.
Srivastava said that in the fourth phase of Vande Bharat Mission, 1197 flights have been scheduled so far including 945 international flights and 252 feeder flights.