NEW DELHI: Private airlines will play a major role in the Vande Bharat Mission Phase 4 beginning July 3. Nearly 500 flights will be operated by the private airlines, including IndiGo and GoAir. In early three phases of the repatriation exercise only Air India and its subsidiaries operated flights to different countries to bring back stranded Indians.
According to the Ministry of Civil Aviation, IndiGo will operate 238 flights from Qatar and 219 flights from Kuwait while GoAir will operate 41 flights from Kuwait. Officials said the numbers of private carriers, flights and destinations are likely to increase in this phase.
Air India has been assigned to operate 170 flights to and from 17 countries during the fourth phase between July 3 and 15. Besides, Air India Express will operate 300 flights in July (136 up to 14 July and 164 between July 15 and 31).
Talking about the success of the mission, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri had on Sunday tweeted, “More than 150K people have returned on VBM flights and 55,000 have flown out of India. With Phase-4 of the mission all set to soar, these numbers will increase significantly. More Indians will be able to return home.” The government had started the mission on May 6.