Sunday, October 25, 2020

Winter 2020 to begin with 44% fewer domestic flights than last year

 New Delhi: The winter schedule for flights, which comes into effect Sunday, will begin with 44% less domestic connectivity than last winter.

The government has currently capped domestic flights at 60% of the originally approved summer schedule in the pandemic. Accordingly, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has cleared a schedule for 12,983 weekly domestic flights covering 95 airports in winter 2020-21 — down 44.3% from 23,307 in winter 2019-20.

The cap on flights is likely to be raised to 75% shortly as air travel is showing signs of revival. As that happens, the domestic schedule will keep getting enhanced, meaning there will be more flights.

The schedule, approved with the current cap of 60%, has seen maximum drop in weekly domestic flights of SpiceJet — 1,957, down 55% from 4,316 last winter. This is followed by Air India — 1,126, down 50% from last winter’s 2,254; GoAir — 1,203, down 48% from 2,308; IndiGo — 6,006, down 42% from 10,310.

A senior DGCA official said, “The schedule has been approved for Indian scheduled operators at 60% of the capacity as directed by the aviation ministry.”

The current pecking order for top 3 airlines in terms of weekly flights is: IndiGo, SpiceJet, Air India group (AI plus Alliance Air together at 1,736). The two Tata Group airlines — Vistara (852) and AirAsia India (885) — together are neck-to-neck with AI group with 1,737 weekly flights.

The Tata Group is likely to fully acquire AirAsia India by buying out the 49% stake of its Malaysian JV partner. Whether it keeps this airline as a standalone budget carrier or merges it with Vistara remains to be seen.

25/10/20 Saurabh Sinha/Times of India

DGCA approves 12,983 weekly domestic flights in winter schedule

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) said it has approved 12,983 weekly domestic flights of airlines for the winter schedule that begins on Sunday and ends on March 27 next year.

In last year’s winter schedule, the aviation regulator had approved 23,307 weekly domestic flights. The DGCA said on Sunday it has approved 6,006 weekly domestic flights of IndiGo for this year’s winter schedule. IndiGo is India’s largest airline.

SpiceJet and GoAir have got 1,957 weekly domestic flights and 1,203 weekly domestic flights approved, the regulator said.

Currently, airlines in India are allowed to operate a maximum 60 per cent of pre-COVID weekly domestic flights. In comparison to last year’s winter schedule, when 23,307 weekly domestic services were approved by the DGCA, this year’s winter schedule has got just 55.7 per cent (12,983 flights) of those flights approved, according to the aviation regulator.

These 55.7 per cent flights will be operating from 95 Indian airports between October 25 and March 27, 2021, the DGCA said.

25/10/20 PTI/Indian Express

Green warriors march in protest against tree felling for Doon airport expansion

Dehradun: People from different walks of life gathered at the Gandhi Park in Dehradun on Sunday and took out an awareness march to the mosque in Paltan Bazaar, a distance of 1.2 km, and back, to protest against the government’s decision to fell over 10,000 trees in the Shivalik Elephant Reserve in order to provide land for the expansion of the Jolly Grant airport. A street play to generate awareness on rampant tree felling and its impact was also enacted.

To recall, hundreds of activists had gathered at Thano near the airport in a similar protest last Sunday. The issue of tree felling for the airport expansion had first been highlighted by TOI in a report earlier this month.

The protesters also reacted sharply against the recent statement by chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat that the protests were “a political ploy against the government” and that expansion of the airport will “only bring prosperity to the state.” “It is ironic that the government is deviating from basic science by claiming that the trees they plan to fell have less value in the ecosystem. They are planning to fell trees such as khair, sagoon, haldu, kanju, etc that have ‘broad leaves’ and are known to be good at carbon sequestration. The state government needs to create jobs, improve the education system and deal with corruption with an iron hand rather that building an international airport at the cost of our greenery and the ecosystem,” said Jagdamba Prasad Maithani of the NGO, Alaknanda Ghaati Shilpi (AAGAAS) Federation.

25/10/20 Shivani Azad/Times of India

Pune airport to get new multi-level car parking and more impressive features

Pune: Soon, Pune airport will get a brand new terminal with multi-level car parking, boarding bridges, restaurants and other convenient features. The terminal has been scheduled to get ready by March 2022, and INR 475 crores have been allocated for its construction. Its objective is to control the existing volume of passenger traffic.

According to reports, Pune International Airport will get an integrated terminal building. As revealed by the Airports Authority of India, this new terminal will have the capacity to accommodate 2300 passengers (1700 domestic and 600 international) during peak hours.

The terminal will be energy efficient and have five boarding, 34 check-in counters, and in-line baggage handling system. In addition, it will be equipped with different eateries and caf├ęs. A new multi-level car parking facility, having the capacity to park 1024 cars will be built for the convenience of passengers. A sky bridge will link the parking area to the departure area of the present airport building.

25/10/20 Times Travel

Delhi airport begins COVID-19 testing for international departures

New Delhi:  International passengers taking their flights from the Delhi airport can now get themselves tested for Covid-19 right before their departure, said Genestrings Diagnostic Center which operates the testing lab at the airport, on Saturday. 

The Covid-19 testing facility, which started operating on September 12 at the Delhi airport, was available only for arrival passengers till date. “The facility has now been extended to air travellers leaving India for other countries.

Notably, international travel rules require passengers travelling from one country to another to produce Covid negative reports,” said a press release by Genestrings.  The lab uses RT-PCR tests and provides reports within 4-6 hours.

It means that travellers should arrive at airport 7-8 hours before their flight to take the test, the press release noted. “The test is available 24/7 and is priced at Rs 2.400 as mandated by the Delhi government,” the release said.     

25/05/20 New Indian Express

Biman, US-Bangla to resume flights to India Oct 28-29

US-Bangla Airlines, the country’s largest private carrier, will resume flight operation to India’s two designations – Kolkata and Chennai – from October 28 while the national flag carrier Biman will reopen its New Delhi flight from October 29.

Apart from Delhi route, Biman Bangladesh Airlines will resume its flight to Kolkata and Chennai from November 1 and 15 respectively, said a press release.

The US-Bangla Airlines will operate flight to Kolkata six days a week except for Monday and to Chennai for four days a week on every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, airlines spokesperson said.

The Novoair, another local carrier, has taken preparation to reopen its Kolkata flight but the resumption date is yet to be decided, said the airlines official.

The move came as Bangladesh and India decided to restore the air connectivity between the two neighbouring countries under “air bubble” arrangement from October 28 after nearly eight months of flight suspension for containment of Covid-19 pandemic.

As per the arrangement, three Bangladeshi airlines — Biman Bangladesh Airlines, US-Bangla Airlines, and Novo Air — will initially operate 28 flights a week while while five Indian carriers — Air India, Vistara, IndiGo, SpiceJet, and GoAir — will run the same number of flights in a week.

According to the Civil Aviation Authority, Bangladesh (CAAB), five Indian airlines will operate flights on Delhi-Dhaka-Delhi, Kolkata-Dhaka-Kolkata, Chennai-Dhaka-Chennai and Mumbai-Dhaka-Mumbai routes.

25/10/20 Dhaka Tribune

Seaplane from Maldives lands successfully at Kochi on way to Gujarat

A seaplane that took off from Male in the Maldives made a successful landing inside Venduruthy channel at Kochi on Sunday on a technical halt.

"A Twin Otter 300 seaplane of M/s Spicejet Technic took off from Male, Maldives and made a successful landing inside Venduruthy channel at Kochi on 25 Oct 20 for a technical halt. The seaplane is 19-seater, which will be able to accommodate 12 passengers," read the press release from Southern Naval Command.

The press release said, "The seaplane was provided assistance with berthing facility at Naval jetty and refuelling for their onward journey. The seaplane is scheduled to fly to Ahmedabad where it will commence flying as a part of regional connectivity scheme between Sabarmati riverfront and Statue of Unity".

"Seaplanes are a natural choice of connectivity between mainland and Lakshadweep islands and inland water channels at Kochi and sheltered lagoons in the islands offer ideal space for the seaplanes to land and take-off," the release said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to inaugurate the Seaplane service in Gujarat on October 31 - the birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhai Patel. It will be the first-ever seaplane to fly from Sabarmati Riverfront in Ahmedabad to the Statue of Unity in Kevadia Colony in the Narmada district.

The seaplane can accommodate 12 passengers and will be managed by the private airline SpiceJet. 

25/10/20 DNA

Jaipur airport will operate 112 flights daily from Sunday

Jaipur: The winter schedule of the city airport kicks off from Sunday during which it will operate 56 inbound and the same number of outbound flights.

The new schedule includes six new flights, while flights to three cities will remain terminated.

As per the new schedule, flights to Indore, Pune and Hyderabad will be terminated till further orders. “Since the inception of these flights, passenger load was almost negligible which prompted operators to withdraw flights to these destinations,” said a senior officer of air traffic control on Saturday.

As a good number of tourists plan a visit to Jaisalmer during winters, three flights to Jaisalmer have been added in this schedule. “This is a good addition as several tourist plan to have visit Jaisalmer after they land in Jaipur,” said Amandeep Singh, a travel agent.

Last winter, Jaipur airport was operating nearly 65 inbound and the same number of outbound flights daily. “We have got good connectivity to the cities, including Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata as more flights to these destinations have been added,” said a senior officer.

25/10/20 Times of India

International Flights: You Can’t Fly to Any Foreign Country From This Indian City Till March 2021

New Delhi: In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Chandigarh International Airport has not listed a single international flight in its winter schedule that comes into effect from October 25 and last till March 2021. Besides, the number of domestic flights has been reduced from 36 to 29 in the latest schedule. 

For the past few years, several flights operating from Chandigarh International Airport remain grounded in winters due to low visibility. 

Earlier on September 18, Indian aviation regulator DGCA had said that foreign carriers can operate their non-scheduled cargo flights to and from six Indian cities — Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru and Hyderabad — only. 

Notably, scheduled flights are those which get their schedule approved by the aviation regulator in advance for a period running into months. Non-scheduled flights are charter flights that are operated as per requirement.

Meanwhile, Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said that he has requested Aviation Secretary PS Kharola to call a meeting on the issue of boosting cargo flight operations at the Amritsar airport.


Cargo Services Start at Uttarakhand's Jollygrant Airport, Will Bolster Commercial Activities in State

Cargo services began from the Jollygrant airport in Dehradun on Wednesday, an official said. Bureau of civil aviation security had given its consent for starting cargo services from the airport recently.

Director of the airport DK Gautam, who inaugurated cargo services from the old terminal building, said it will give a boost to commercial activities in Uttarakhand and help in the transportation of local products to the market place in much less time. An Indigo airlines flight took the first cargo bookings, Gautam said.

Recently, the Airports Authority of India (AAI) announced that it plans to develop at least 100 airports, waterdromes and heliports by 2024 under the regional air connectivity scheme, according to an official release. The fourth anniversary of the scheme, also known as UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Nagrik), was commemorated on Wednesday.

The scheme is aimed at providing affordable, economically viable and profitable air travel on regional routes. "50 unserved and underserved airports (including five heliports) with 285 routes have been added under UDAN across the length and breadth of India. As the implementing agency, AAI has an ambitious plan to develop at least 100 airports/ waterdromes/ heliports by 2024 under the scheme," the release said.

During a video conference to commemorate UDAN Day on Wednesday, Civil Aviation Secretary Pradeep Singh Kharola said stakeholders should work towards making the scheme sustainable on its own and improve its efficiency. He also urged airlines to undertake marketing initiatives so that more people can take benefit of the scheme, as per the release.

25/10/20 PTI/

Karipur air crash: Last passenger discharged from hospital after treatment for 2 months

"After it landed on the runway, I felt it was slipping into a gutter. Suddenly, I lost consciousness. When I became conscious I could hear people talking..I understood that it was rescue workers..I am thankful to a lot of God," seated in a wheelchair at the Aster MIMS Hospital in Kozhikode, Noufal recalled that dreadful night of August, which took the lives of 21 of his co-passengers. Noufal is one of the survivors of the Karipur air crash and the last to get discharged after suffering grievous injuries. On Saturday, this 36-year-old Wayanad native got discharged from Aster MIMS after over 70 days of rigorous treatment in the hospital.

As the hospital staff helped Noufal, who now moves with the help of a wheelchair, into a car, he waved at everyone along with his wife and son, probably happy to finally leave to his house, surviving the tragic air crash.

From the moment Noufal was brought into the hospital, he was in a critical condition. He had head and spine injuries, fractures in both legs, serious injuries on the back which even revealed his spinal cord. After being treated in emergency medicine and critical care, he had to undergo various surgeries for head injury and spine damage over the course of two months.

On August 7 night an Air India Express flight from Dubai to Kerala crashed at the runway of the Calicut International Airport right after it landed. The aircraft which slipped into a slope broke off into two, taking the lives of many including the pilots, on the spot. The flight was part of the Vande Bharat Mission of the Union Government to bring in expats who were stranded due to COVID-19. 

While many escaped uninjured, 18 people lost their lives on the spot and three others died while undergoing treatment.

25/10/20 News Minute

T1 expansion delayed by a year as Covid-19 hits air traffic badly

New Delhi: With Covid severely crippling air traffic, Delhi International Airport Ltd (DIAL) has slowed down the ongoing expansion work at terminal 1 (T1). The June 2022 completion date has been deferred by a year. However, other infra augmentation work, such as the fourth runway and the elevated cross taxiway, are proceeding as per schedule and will be completed by next year.

Comments from Delhi International Airport Ltd were awaited till the time of going to press.

IGIA was operating only T3 for all domestic and international flights till September-end. T2 was put into use only from October 1 for handling some domestic flights of IndiGo and GoAir.

“Given the revised traffic projections during the pandemic, the existing capacity of T1 (which is used for domestic flights only) is going to be sufficient till FY 2022-23. So the ongoing expansion work to double T1’s existing annual 2 crore passenger handling capacity to 4 crore has been slowed and now, completion is targeted for June 2023. Work on T1 has not been stopped, it has only been slowed down,” said sources.

IGIA has projected a precipitous 73% fall in traffic this financial year with an expected total (domestic plus international) passenger number of 1.8 crore — down from 6.7 crore in the April 2019-March 2020 period. DIAL now estimates post-Covid recovery in air travel only by financial year 2023-24 when it expects 7.3 crore flyers.

DIAL’s plan for T1 includes expanding the departures and arrival buildings with a new architectural facade on the city side, and the integration with the existing terminal. The terminal area will then increase to over 1.9 lakh square metres. The number of entry gates will increase from 8 to 13 and of arrival baggage carousels from 8 to 10.

25/10/20 Saurabh Sinha/Times of India

Silchar Airport Announces Winter Schedule, Opens Route With Jaipur And Bangalore

Silchar airport authorities on Sunday announced the Winter Schedule of flights to and from Silchar airport, which is likely to open up new routes.

According to the schedule, which will be effective from 25.10.2020 to 27.03.2021, Indigo airlines will introduce new flight, 6E447/449 in the Silchar Kolkata sector, which will be quad-weekly (Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday) with its A320 type aircraft.

“Winter Schedule is ushering in some great news for Air passengers of Silchar with newer destinations getting connected with the airport,” an airport official said.

For the first time, Silchar airport will be getting connected to Jaipur airport, as the above mentioned Indigo Airlines flight will be starting its journey from Jaipur airport and will reach to Silchar via Kolkata.

“Flight number 6E251/614 of Indigo & SG8152/8169 of Spicejet will provide through connectivity from & to Delhi Airport via Guwahati” the official informed.

25/10/20 Barak Bulletin

Vistara to Operate More Flights to Goa from Delhi, Mumbai Due to Rising Demand

Vistara will operate more flights to Goa from Delhi and Mumbai from Sunday as there has been a "positive response and demand" on these sectors, said a senior airline official on Wednesday. The airline plans to operate two more weekly flights on the Delhi-Goa route and one more weekly flight on the Mumbai-Goa route, the official said.

Goa sees a huge influx of tourists during every winter. "Vistara is currently operating 9x weekly flights between Delhi and Goa, and 10x weekly flights between Mumbai and Goa," Vinod Kannan, Chief Commercial Officer of Vistara, told PTI.

"Considering the encouraging response on these sectors, we plan to increase it to 11x weekly flights between Delhi/Mumbai and Goa in the winter schedule starting 25 October 2020," he added. The coastal state sees a high number of foreign tourists, including a sizable number from Russia and Britain, during the winter season. From August 28 onwards, Vistara started operating special flights on Delhi-London route using its newly-inducted Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft.

"The (Delhi-London) flights have also been re-timed, effective October 25, to enable convenient connections to and from several cities across India, including Goa," Kannan said. The airline would operate five flights a week on the Delhi-London route from November 21, instead of four a week being operated currently, and a daily service from December 1. The increase in frequency to and from Goa as well as on the Delhi-London sector are resultants of the positive response and demand on these routes, Kannan noted.

25/10/20 PTI/News18

Patna airport to operate 44 flights in winter

Patna: The number of flights operating from Jayaprakash Narayan International Airport here will remain unchanged at 44 during winter

As per the winter schedule of the airport, to be effective from October 25, different airlines have tweaked the departure and arrival timings of several flights owing to poor visibility. The flight operating time has been reduced from 4am to 1am to 5am to 11.15pm.

The airport’s deputy general manager (air traffic management), Santosh Kumar, said the new schedule has been approved by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and it would be officially released by Patna airport on Sunday. “The flight schedule will remain effective till March 27, 2021 with several changes during the winter. Some airlines have changed their morning and late evening timings,” he said, adding IndiGo will operate 17 flights, SpiceJet 14, GoAir seven and Air India and Vistara three each.

Patna airport has direct connectivity to cities like Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Mumbai, Amritsar, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Lucknow, Guwahati and Varanasi.

25/10/20 Faryal Rumi/Times of Indi

MLA involved in Kerala gold smuggling case: Customs report

An MLA was also involved in the gold smuggling racket that was busted in Kerala on July 5, the Customs Department has said in a secret report.

The name of the MLA is mentioned in the report the Customs has submitted to the Union Finance Ministry along with an application to invoke ‘COFEPOSA’ (Conservation of Foreign Exchange and Prevention of Smuggling Activities Act) against the main accused, Swapna Suresh and Sandeep Nair.

The MLA has not been named as an accused or witness in the case.

The MLA's connections with the accused is mentioned on page 5 of the confidential report with the file number ‘PD12002–06–2020 COFEPOSA’. It says K.T. Ramees is the mastermind of the gold smuggling operations.

The report says the MLA was a key link in the smuggling ring and supports the claim with the statements of witnesses. The role of the MLA is also mentioned in the details of the communication between the accused as part of the gold smuggling. But at no point during the gold smuggling operations did Swapna and the MLA interact directly. They communicated through Ramees, who is yet to reveal the role of the MLA.

Investigating officials say that Ramees destroyed one of his mobile phones a day after (on July 2) information came out that a diplomatic parcel containing gold had been detained by the Customs department at the Thiruvananthapuram Airport.

Ramees got calls on this phone from Anoop Mohammad, an accused in the Bengaluru drugs case. This SIM card is registered in the name of a Tamil Nadu native.

25/10/20 The Week

Saturday, October 24, 2020

World’s largest civilian transport aircraft lifts Red Deer Company to India to battle nightmare well blowout

The world’s largest Civilian transport aircraft ANTONOV (AN124) which has been commissioned for snubbing operation in Baghjan-well number 5 landed at Kolkata airport on Wednesday night from where it will make a 14- day long road journey to reach Baghjan in Assam’s Tinsukia district.

Reportedly, as both the Guwahati and Dibrugarh airport runways are not able to handle the massive Ukrainian ANTONOV (AN124) aircraft, it had to be landed in Kolkata.

As per reports, the 59,000 kgs equipment boarded the An124 heavy-lift aircraft – the world’s largest cargo carrier from Russia. The aircraft is used all over the world for its long haul cargo dropping.

According to the OIL sources, the aircraft was commissioned by Piston Well Service Inc of Canada which was hired by Alert Disaster Control, Singapore. The Alert has been commissioned by OIL for killing the Baghjan-5 well, which was burning since May 27 of this year.

According to the spokesperson of Oil India Limited (OIL) Tridiv Hazarika, the snubbing operation is expected to commence by the beginning of next week and the fire is expected to be snubbed by the first week of November ending months of misery of the people of Baghja

Earlier, the general manager of the company Ross Whelan informed the same through a facebook post saying that a crew had arrived and was ready to board a heavy-lift aircraft from Canada’s Calgary.

“Our crew has arrived, and 59,000kg of our equipment boarded the An124 heavy-lift aircraft in Calgary today,” he said.

23/10/20 Todayville

Telangana: Customs seizes gold worth approximately Rs 71 lakhs from Hyderabad airport

Hyderabad: Based on specific inputs, gold worth Rs 70,95,183 was seized at the Hyderabad airport from two international passengers.

As per the Commissioner, Customs Department, specific intelligence had been received about two international passengers concealing foreign marked gold, on flight number 6E 8462 from Dubai to Visakhapatnam, and then “the same aircraft has been under domestic run from Visakhapatnam to Hyderabad”.

Upon being intercepted and during the interrogation they were found carrying four pieces of cut gold on Friday.

The gold added up to 1.386 kilogram taking its value to nearly Rs 71 lakhs in the market, as per N Sridhar, Commissioner.

The smuggled gold has been seized under provisions of the Customs Act, 1962. Further investigation is underway. 

24/10/20 ANI/Zee5

Flights to Germany resume as Europe gets hit

With the second wave of covid-19 spreading across Europe and flights to and from Germany resuming next week, covid cases are expected to rise in the days to come. 
Lufthansa had earlier cancelled its flights to and from India, after a disagreement took place over the number of flights that were being operated. In addition, the Frankfurt-Bengaluru route is also resuming after three and a half weeks. Starting next week, Air India flights will operate between India and Germany after the recommencement of Air Bubble agreement between the two countries. 
The national carrier will operate two weekly flights between Bengaluru and Frankfurt from October 26 to March 28. Similarly, German-carrier Lufthansa which had suspended flight services to India, will operate 10 weekly flights to India out of which three are to and from Bengaluru. Currently, Bengaluru is connected to European cities like London, Paris, Amsterdam through Air Bubbles and the Vande Bharat Mission. 
According to the Ministry of Civil Aviation, the Indian and German carriers are now permitted to operate flights between the two countries. Lufthansa’s website mentions special criteria for travelling under the current agreement. Any Indian national holding a valid German visa or a valid Schengen visa, travelling to any country in the Schengen zone/European Union (EU) are allowed to travel, said the website.
Stranded nationals, residents of any country in the Schengen zone/EU, foreign nationals destined for Germany or transiting through Germany or spouses of these persons, can also travel, according to the agreement. With covid-19 cases rising in Europe, there are mandatory requirements which passengers will have to undergo before and after entering India. The passengers will have to submit a selfdeclaration form three days (72 hours) before their scheduled travel. 
24/10/20 Hemanth CS/Bangalore Mirror 

5 Things You Need To Know About Murari Lal Jalan

Murari Lal Jalan was a relatively lesser known name in India till some months ago. But this businessman is now in the spotlight after his consortium got the approval of the revival plan for the now defunct Jet Airways, the oldest private airline of India. Jet Airways shut down in April, 2019 when the debts could no longer be controlled by its then owner, Naresh Goyal. Now the airways need a strong controlling hand to turn its fortune around. Will Jalan be able to do so?

Let’s look into what we know about Jalan >>

Government ready to bless restart of Jet Airways

The government is ready to bless the restart of Jet Airways and resumption of its domestic operations is likely to be a smooth process after aircraft availability and fund infusion, CNBC-TV18 has learned.

Incorporated in 1992, Jet Airways started flights in 1993 with a fleet of four aircraft and a network of 12 destinations. After 26 years, the airline suffered severe financial stress, could not come up with ways of fund infusion and debt repayment and shut down on April 17, 2019.

“The air operator certificate of Jet Airways still remains suspended. The government will look at reviving the air operator certificate after the airline clears the necessary regulatory clearances…the regulator will check for airworthiness, maintenance of their equipment, etc….once these processes are complete then they will be able to fly again,” a senior official told CNBC-TV18.

Jet Airways, the biggest international airline from India until last year, had its hub in Mumbai with a host of international flights. However, as the airline started grounding flights, its active fleet reduced to 5 in April 2019 as compared to 119 in Jan 2019. As a result, its slots at airports were given to other airlines by a committee formed by the civil aviation ministry.

Nearly 1.5 years later, the airline will need to re-apply for the slots at domestic airports but the allocation of slots at Indian airports is expected to be a smooth process, especially in view of current weak traffic levels due to COVID-19, officials said.

“Jet Airways need to re-apply for slots at Indian airports…but we don’t foresee issues in slot availability for Jet Airways at Indian airports. Resumption of domestic operations at Indian airports seems to be a smooth process once there is aircraft availability, fund infusion. However, for foreign airports, payment of pending dues will be a concern so it may take some time for overseas operations,” the official added.

External factors such as COVID-19-led weakness in lease rentals, staff costs are also likely to be favorable for the resumption of Jet Airways, officials added.

23/10/20 Anu Sharma/CNBC TV18

IIT Roorkee wins GRIHA Trophy for design of terminal building at Bagdogra Airport

Students from Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee won the GRIHA trophy at a contest organised by the GRIHA Council to promote the concept of green buildings. The trophy was presented to the winners at a virtual felicitation ceremony during the 62nd edition of National Association of Students of Architecture Convention in Bengaluru. The Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee was awarded prize money of Rs 75,000 in Bengaluru.

Welcoming the audience and speakers, Mr. Sanjay Seth, CEO, GRIHA Council, said that the collaboration with National Association of Students of Architecture (NASA) for the GRIHA Trophy was essential to cultivate a sense of good passive design, understanding of local materials, integration of renewable energy and resource efficient planning among architectural students. While welcoming the dignitaries, he provided an insight into the collaborative efforts being taken with NASA to jointly promote the concept of green buildings and sustainable habitat through sensitisation of students.

Expressing his views on the role of future architects, Ar. Habeeb Khan, President, Council of Architecture said, “Architects plays a very important role in Government’s various initiatives such as Smart Cities, Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, MNREGA, Housing & Sanitation for all etc. apart from meeting the growing demand of Indian construction industry and private sector.Events likethe GRIHA Trophy provides them platforms to apply technically sound concepts to their designs while being creative as well.”

The competition this year, witnessed an overwhelming response from the students with participation from 25 colleges. The entries were evaluated by an eminent panel comprising Ar. Sangeeta Mahay, General Manager, AAI, Ar. Gaurav Shorey, Founder & Managing Director, PSI & Ar. Shruti Dimri, Principal Architect, Anagram Architects.The designs were evaluated on innovation in architecture, sustainability, and innovative systems.

24/10/20 Tribune

Have requested aviation secretary to call meeting to boost cargo ops at Amritsar airport: Puri

New Delhi: Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri on Saturday said he has requested Aviation Secretary P S Kharola to call a meeting on the issue of boosting cargo flight operations at the Amritsar airport.

India follows a very liberal air cargo policy, the minister said on Twitter, adding that foreign and Indian carriers can operate scheduled international cargo flights from any point in India, including Amritsar and Chandigarh.

"However, there was insufficient cargo aggregation at the Amritsar Sahib airport. I have requested the Secretary @MoCA_GoI to call a meeting on this issue & provide all necessary assistance to the state," he said.

In order to promote agricultural exports, the government launched Krishi Udan scheme in August under which landing and parking charges are waived by the AAI for each such cargo flight wherein agriculture product is more than 50 per cent of the total chargeable weight carried.

Amritsar Sahib, Adampur, Bathinda, Pathankot, Chandigarh and Ludhiana airports are included in the Krishi Udan scheme, Puri said.

Spicejet has undertaken 14 cargo flights on Delhi-Amritsar-Moscow route since April 2020, Puri said.

24/10/20 PTI/Outlook

Drones In India, Are We Ready For The Take-off?

Drone is an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that’s primarily used in the military for strikes, surveillance, and carrying ammunition. About thirty per cent of drones across the world have non-military uses in commercial, scientific, recreational, agricultural and other fields. The Indian military has deployed drones for tracking enemy movements along international borders, in rescue missions, and emergency services. 

Automated drones can be programmed to be controlled by an AI application for routine jobs and sometimes do not require human intervention. The drones flight-path can be pre-programmed along with the use of computer vision; they can achieve a wide array of tasks in remote areas or areas that are difficult to navigate for people. Drones are being used for development purposes like aerial mapping and monitoring critical infrastructures like ports and power plants. The most important feature of a drone is its ability to go to places that are difficult for a person to reach and the ability to zoom in and see things in detail. Unfortunately, this is its most significant disadvantage too because it poses a great threat to personal and national security. 

To talk about some sectors: 

Healthcare: Drones can be used for the collection of blood samples and for delivery of medicines, especially in a geographically diverse country like India where travel by road is often not the fastest. Mountains with treacherous roads, dense forests, flooded areas are places where the sick have difficulty accessing healthcare. Drones will be able to save critical time and eventually, lives. Transport of organs from a donor to a recipient through cities with heavy traffic is again one of those cases that will benefit greatly from drone deliveries. 

Agriculture: Drones can be used for aerial survey to collect data about the soil, monitor crop health, spray fertilisers and analyse the weather. Paired with camera and computer vision, this could enable a fast tracing of diseases and save time and money for the farmers.

Disaster management (Rescue and relief): The most impairing aspect of a disaster is the inability to reach people because of roads being damaged. Drones can be used to survey areas, and send live information about trapped people, drop supplies to remote places and also help in planning rescue operations. 

Entertainment: Drones are used for several creative renditions already, shooting long sweeping shots for landscapes, marriage photography, movies and tv-series. 

24/10/20 Kunal Kislay/Analytics India Mag

NTPC allowed to use drones at select plants

New Delhi: The Centre has granted conditional exemption to power generation major NTPC for the deployment of drones to carry out research and inspection activities at some of its plants.

The Ministry of Civil Aviation has granted conditional exemption to NTPC for the deployment of Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS).

As per a ministry statement, these drones will carry out research and inspection activities at Vindhyachal Super Thermal Power Station, Madhya Pradesh, Gadarwara Super Thermal Power Plant, Madhya Pradesh, and Sipat Super Thermal Power Project, Chhattisgarh.

"NTPC will use the drones to carry out terrain mapping, stockpile volumetric analysis, aerial inspections and other applications at the three NTPC sites," Joint Secretary, Civil Aviation, Amber Dubey, said in a statement.

"This will provide NTPC excellent data with high accuracy at a fraction of the cost. This is in line with Government of India's attempts to promote use of industrial drones in infrastructure, mining, agriculture and disaster relief etc."

23/10/20 IANS/Daijiworld

Foreign carriers can operate non-scheduled cargo flights from six Indian cities only: Puri

India’s decision to restrict foreign carriers’ non-scheduled cargo flights to major cities in the country was taken to provide a level playing to domestic airlines at a time when COVID-19 has significantly affected the aviation sector, said Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri on Thursday.

Indian aviation regulator DGCA had on September 18 said that foreign carriers can operate their non-scheduled cargo flights to and from six Indian cities — Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru and Hyderabad — only.

Scheduled flights are those which get their schedule approved by the aviation regulator in advance for a period running into months. Non-scheduled flights are charter flights that are operated as per requirement.

Puri said on Twitter,”For providing a level playing field for Indian air cargo operators in these Covid affected times, some changes have been made in the open sky policy for cargo.”

He said non-scheduled cargo flight operations by foreign carriers to and from India are now “restricted to Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru and Hyderabad” while Indian carriers can still mount non-scheduled cargo flights from any point in the country.

Foreign carriers carry around 90 per cent of the total international cargo to and from India, Puri said on Twitter, adding that no change has been made in the “open sky policy for scheduled cargo operations of Indian or foreign carriers”.

“They (foreign carriers’ scheduled cargo flights) can still fly to/from any point in India, including those in Kerala,” he added.

Earlier in the day, Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan met Puri and requested him to add Kochi airport to the list of six airports permitted to handle non-scheduled cargo flights of foreign carriers.

23/10/20 PTI/Financial Express

Proposed airport in Mandi CM’s jumla: HPCC general secretary

Mandi: Himachal Pradesh Congress Committee (HPCC) general secretary Ashray Sharma today said that the proposed international airport project in Mandi was a mere ‘jumla’ of Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur.

He said, “If Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur gets an airport constructed in Mandi, I will quit politics. The promise to construct an airport in Mandi is a mere ‘jumla’ of the Chief Minister. During three years of the BJP rule in the state, it has failed miserably to ensure development in Mandi. Also, the government has failed to check the spread of Covid-19. As a result, many people died due to poor health facilities”.

Ashray defended his father Anil Sharma, BJP legislator from Mandi Sadar, whom Mandi MP Ram Swaroop had criticised two days ago. Addressing mediapersons here, he said, “Ram Swaroop Sharma has failed miserably as MP to usher in development in Mandi. He got a lead of 27,000 votes in Mandi Sadar but did nothing for the progress of the area and for the people of the region”.

“MP Ram Swaroop Sharma targeted my grandfather, former Telecom Minister Pandit Sukh Ram, and my father Anil Sharma, who is a BJP legislator, saying that the Sukh Ram family has stalled the progress of Mandi Sadar. He forgot that it was Pandit Sukh Ram who led the revolution in telecommunication in India and Himachal Pradesh when he was the Union Telecom Minister,” he added.

24/10/20 Tribune

Second VVIP plane for President, PM to arrive in Delhi today

The second customised Boeing-777 plane for the VVIP travel of Prime Minister and President is set to land in Delhi on Saturday.

The first of the two custom-made B777 aircraft arrived from the US in India earlier this month. The two jets will be used to fly the President, Vice President and the Prime Minister.

Both the aircraft are equipped with missile defence systems, as efficient as that of the US President's Air Force One. The two aircraft have can fly directly from India to the US without having to stop. These are India's first two aircraft designated for VVIP travel.

It was expected that the delivery of these two planes would be done by July. However, due to COVID-19, their delivery has been delayed by a few months.

During the travel of the VVIPs, the two B777 aircraft will be operated by pilots of the Indian Air Force (IAF) and not of Air India.

Currently, the President, Vice President and the Prime Minister fly on Air India's B747 planes, which have the call sign Air India One. Air India pilots fly these B747 aircraft for the dignitaries and the Air India Engineering Services Limited (AIESL) maintains them.

When these B747 aircraft are not flying the dignitaries, they are used by the Indian national carrier for commercial operations.

The new planes will be used for travel of the dignitaries only.

24/10/20 Free Press Journal

Phase II of aviation hub in Hisar gets green nod

Hisar: After getting an environmental clearance from the Union Environment and Forest Ministry, the state government is set to start the second phase of the ambitious aviation hub project here.

The “bhoomi poojan” of the project scheduled for October 27 will mark the first year of the BJP-JJP government in office.

Deputy Chief Minister Dushyant Chautala said the aviation hub would be a milestone for not only the region, but also for the entire state. “The airstrip will be extended during the second phase. Besides, a taxi way, a taxi stand, parking space for planes, and terminal and air traffic control system will be constructed.”

District officials said the state government was considering developing the Hisar aviation hub into an international Aerotropolis Project and Special Economic Zone (SEZ). Local MLA Kamal Gupta has submitted a proposal in this regard to Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar, who has discussed the proposal with senior officials, including Additional Chief Secretary AK Singh.

The officials have drawn a proposal of an SEZ in Hisar as 17,300 acres is available in and adjoining areas of the town.

24/10/20 Deepender Deswal/Tribune

Delhi Airport to Soon Start COVID-19 Testing For International Departures

New Delhi: International passengers taking their flights from the Delhi airport will soon be able to get themselves tested for COVID-19 right before their departure, Genestrings Diagnostic Center which operates the testing lab at the airport said on Saturday. 

The COVID-19 testing facility, which started operating on September 12 at the Delhi airport, is available only for international arrivals currently. 

Earlier in the day, Genestrings issued a press release saying, “The (testing) facility has now been extended to air travellers leaving India for other countries.”

However, the company later revised its press release, saying that the testing facility “will soon” be extended to air travellers departing from India.

“Notably, international travel rules require passengers travelling from one country to another to produce COVID negative reports,” it added.

The lab uses RT-PCR tests and provides reports within 4-6 hours.

“The test is available 24/7 and is priced at Rs 2,400 as mandated by the Delhi government,” the release said.

“As more people are now taking up international travel, Delhi Airport authorities felt the need to provide the testing facility to outbound passengers as well,” said Rajat Arora, Director, Genestrings Diagnostic Center.

24/10/20 PTI/

Hopeful for a Quick Revival of Indian Aviation Sector: Airbus South Asia President

Strong local fundamentals will aide the revival of India's aviation sector, believes Airbus South Asia President, Remi Maillard.

In a conversation with IANS, Remi Maillard, President and Managing Director, Airbus India and South Asia, expressed confidence in the industry's potential along with its revival prospects on the back of strong fundamentals.

"I remain confident about the future of the Indian aviation industry because of the strong local fundamentals," Maillard said. "That is why, in parallel to our efforts of catalysing a safe traffic recovery, we need to work on further strengthening the foundations for India to become a world leader in the civil aviation industry. This implies further developing the domestic market, turning India into an international hub, growing the MRO and training eco-systems as well as stimulating the helicopter business," he added.

Notably, the sector has been heavily battered by the coronavirus outbreak and its cascading impact on the overall travel industry. Maillard termed the pandemic as the 'gravest crisis' that industry has ever faced.

"There is not one single player in the market that is immune to the crisis, be it an airline, a lessor, an MRO, a training centre, an airport, an equipment supplier or an aircraft manufacturer. It is a long-term crisis," he elaborated. "Given how deep the crisis is, a full recovery in aviation will take years specifically when it comes to international flights," he added.

24/10/20 IANS/

Vistara takes multiple steps to ensure safety onboard amid COVID-19 pandemic

From giving beverages in single-use disposable cups to thoroughly cleaning cutlery, blankets and pillows, Vistara is taking adequate precautions to make flying completely safe amid the coronavirus pandemic. A spokesperson of the airline, in a statement, said Vistara will continue to use rotable trays, crockeries and cutleries which are thoroughly washed by automated machines and air-dried at high temperature.

“These rotables are subsequently inspected by the QA (quality assurance) team of Vistara’s caterer,” the spokesperson asserted. “Beverages are permitted to be served only in single-use disposable units by authorities in keeping with the current situation,” he said.

Scheduled international passenger flights have been suspended in India since March 23 due to the coronavirus pandemic. However, special passenger flights have been permitted to operate between India and around 20 countries under the bilateral air bubble arrangements.

Under such air bubble arrangements, Vistara is also operating its international flights. “Vistara’s single-use earphones are made available for the short-haul flights, while the headphones are made available for the medium and long-haul flights,” the spokesperson said.

The headphones are cleaned and sanitised regularly, the spokesperson stated. All used blankets and pillows are being thoroughly washed using approved detergents with hot water, and dried at high temperatures, before they’re packed for use again, the spokesperson said.

During the last few months, aviation regulator DGCA has issued multiple guidelines to ensure safety on ground and onboard a flight amid the pandemic. “Reading materials have been discontinued as a preventive measure in view of any cross-contamination concerns,” the spokesperson said.

In case a passenger has specific meal preferences, the airline is offering a fruit platter, according to the spokesperson. The airline is offering bottled water to its passengers instead of giving water in cups. India resumed scheduled domestic passenger flights on May 25 after a gap of two months due to the pandemic.

Vistara consumer survey, which concluded in June, revealed that fear of exposure during air travel is one of the key concerns among travellers.

24/10/20 PTI/Financial Express

Fresh hopes wreckage of MH370 could be found six years after the plane went missing – as experts finds a likely crash site and say they would 'bet their house on' it being there

Aviation experts claim they have finally located the crash site of MH370, which vanished in March 2014 with 239 passengers on board. 

Despite a four-year, $200million international search effort covering more than 120,000sqm, the wreckage of the Malaysia Airlines plane has never been found, sparking the world's biggest aviation mystery. 

The experts believe the Boeing 777 plunged into the South Indian Ocean, near the co-ordinates of S34.2342 and E93.7875 - which is about 1,285 miles (2,070km) off the coast of Perth in Western Australia.

Engineer Victor Ianello and his team, based in the United States, this week said 'there are even better odds' the plane's wreckage is within 100 nautical miles of the of those co-ordinates, according to AirLive. 

Mr Ianello, who assisted Australian officials during the search, believes the plane flew 2,700 miles (4,340km) past Indonesia before crashing. 

Another aviation expert Byron Bailey, a former pilot, also says investigators were looking in the wrong spot and should have been looking south of the search site. 

'I'm sure the captain was trying to ditch the aircraft in as far south, remote location as possible, and leave as little wreckage as possible that would sink.' Mr Bailey said. 

He claims the search was within 30km of where he estimates the plane wreckage is situated. 

'If I'm wrong then it probably means the aircraft has been taken by aliens or is sitting in a hangar somewhere in Kazakhstan. I'd bet my house on it. As far as I'm concerned we know where it is, we've always known where it is,' he said. 

24/10/20 Brett Lackey and Brittany Chain/Daily Mail Australia/Mail Online

Limited entry of Indians to Bahrain causing airfare to soar

As per India’s ‘air bubble’ arrangements with Bahrain, Air India/ Air India Express and Gulf Air are permitted to transport people between the two countries, with certain restrictions. However, airfare to Bahrain is considerably steeper than that of flights to other Gulf nations. The average fare of the special flights from Kerala to Bahrain is between Rs 30,000 to Rs 39,000. Addressing this, on Thursday, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said that the reason for this price hike is that Bahrain only allows 750 passengers from India per week.

"Average fares on Kerala-Dubai flights are between Rs 6,500 and Rs 12,800 while Kerala-Doha flights cost between Rs 7,150 and Rs 15,50," the minister tweeted. 

Earlier during the day, Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan met Puri and told him about "the surge in the pricing of flight tickets" from GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) countries to India. Muraleedharan tweeted that he "sought his (Puri's) urgent attention to alleviate the financial and mental hardships faced by Keralite expatriates working in those countries".

Puri responded to Muraleedharan's tweets, saying, "Bahrain has placed a restriction of 750 passengers per week from India and fare band on Kerala-Bahrain sector is Rs 30,000 to 39,000 for Indian carriers." He added, "Average fare band for Indian carriers on Kerala-Dubai sector is Rs 6,500 to 12,800 & on Kerala-Doha sector it is Rs 7,150 to 15,500." Kerala is connected to UAE, Bahrain, Oman and Qatar via the air bubble arrangement, Puri said.

23/10/20 News Minute

Air India M’luru, B’luru flights resume on Oct 26

Mangaluru: Air India has announced resumption of flights between Mangaluru and Bengaluru starting Monday. Flight AI 575 will depart from Bengaluru at 4pm and reach Mangaluru International Airport (MIA) at 5.20pm. Flight AI 576 will depart MIA at 6pm and reach Kempegowda International Airport in Bengaluru at 7.20pm. The flights will operate on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Fares start at Rs 2,342, a communique from the airline stated.

24/10/20 Times of India

In a first for Indore, new regional airline turns the city airport as its domicile base

The Devi Ahilyabai Holkar Airport in the city of Indore becomes the base operating centre of new regional airlines that is to kickstart services from November 15. The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has provided the new venture with a clearance after inspection, and the airlines has already started to work on the set up and maintenance for the same at the airport premises. The maiden aircraft, imported from Australia, will reach Indore in a week.

For the first time, a regional airline kickstarting operations has picked Indore as its centre operating station, unlike other enterprises that prefer the metro cities of Mumbai and Delhi. The new airline has been allotted with night parking space, at the Indore Airport, which can accommodate up to 2 aircraft units. Besides this, Indigo airline aircraft also hold the night parking at the Ahilyabai Holkar Airport.

The addition of this new venture to the already existing 6 flights to and fro from Indore will assist the city in creating greater connectivity, running on expected new routes.

The Officials at the Indore Airport are also incubating the launch of direct flights to Bhopal and Jabalpur, within the state, and then to Ahmedabad as well. The final schedule regarding the same will be declared by the Airport Authorities post the clearance of required formalities and permissions.

24/10/20 Muskaan Tekwani/Knock Sense

IndiGo bars 9 journalists from flying for 15 days over unruly conduct in Kangana Ranaut's flight

New Delhi: IndiGo has decided to bar nine media personnel from flying with the airline for 15 days over their alleged unruly behaviour onboard a flight in which actor Kangana Ranaut was travelling to Mumbai from Chandigarh in September.

Sources in IndiGo say this action was recommended by an internal committee that was set up in the wake of DGCA reprimanding the airline for not acting against mediapersons who allegedly behaved in an unruly fashion.

The incident in question took place on September 9. The journalists have been barred from flying with IndiGo between October 15-30.

Following the September 9 incident, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) had written a strongly worded letter to IndiGo CEO Wolfgang Prock-Schauer, listing out the violations that allegedly took place on the Chandigarh-Mumbai flight.

It was alleged that some mediapersons violated safety and social distancing norms while reporting about Kangana Ranaut, who was travelling to Mumbai.

The DGCA had also issued an order warning all domestic airlines that it would suspend a flight for two weeks if any such violation is found hereafter.

The aviation regulator has instructed IndiGo to take action against all those who violated guidelines and SOPs, and submit an action taken report. The DGCA had warned it will take suitable action if the airlines fails to submit the report.

DGCA had said there were multiple issues involved in the case. The prominent ones include photography on board a flight (violation of Aircraft rules 13), violation of Covid-19 protocols and certain actions falling within the purview of unruly behavior on board.

24/10/20 Poulomi Saha/India Today

Deep in Love, Teenagers Secretly Fly to Chennai from Tripura for ‘Sightseeing’, Recused by Childline

A 17-year-old boy and a 14-year-old girl secretly flew from Tripura to Chennai, Tamil Nadu for “sightseeing”.

Thanks to alert cops at the Chennai airport and swift action by Child Welfare Committees (CWCs) in both states the teenagers will soon be reunited with their parents.

A CWC member said the duo landed in Chennai on Monday afternoon. A friend was supposed to receive them but he didn’t turn up; so, the two spent the night at the airport. Later, when cops at the airport noticed them wandering there, they informed Childline.

“They had taken a flight from Agartala to Kolkata and then to Chennai as the boy has a friend here. Initially, they were giving contradictory explanations but later said they were in love and had come to Chennai for sightseeing. The girl also wanted to go on a flight,” a CWC member told The Times of India.

The official further stated that they obtained Aadhar Card details of the children’s parents from their mobile phones and contacted them. They also reached out to their counterparts in Tripura.

The Tripura CWC officials verified that the two were missing from their home. Following this, they deputed two officials, accompanied by a relative of the teenage girl, to Chennai to bring them back to Tripura.

24/10/20 Northeast Today

Have requested aviation secretary to call meeting to boost cargo ops at Amritsar airport: Puri

New Delhi: Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri on Saturday said he has requested Aviation Secretary P S Kharola to call a meeting on the issue of boosting cargo flight operations at the Amritsar airport.

India follows a very liberal air cargo policy, the minister said on Twitter, adding that foreign and Indian carriers can operate scheduled international cargo flights from any point in India, including Amritsar and Chandigarh.

"However, there was insufficient cargo aggregation at the Amritsar Sahib airport. I have requested the Secretary @MoCA_GoI to call a meeting on this issue & provide all necessary assistance to the state," he said.

In order to promote agricultural exports, the government launched Krishi Udan scheme in August under which landing and parking charges are waived by the AAI for each such cargo flight wherein agriculture product is more than 50 per cent of the total chargeable weight carried.

Amritsar Sahib, Adampur, Bathinda, Pathankot, Chandigarh and Ludhiana airports are included in the Krishi Udan scheme, Puri said.

Spicejet has undertaken 14 cargo flights on Delhi-Amritsar-Moscow route since April 2020, Puri said.

India''s decision to restrict foreign carriers'' non-scheduled cargo flights to major cities in India was taken to provide a level playing to the Indian airlines at a time when COVID-19 has significantly affected the aviation sector, Puri had said on Twitter on Thursday.

24/10/20 PTI/Outlook

Gold worth Rs 27 lakh seized from passenger at MIA

Mangaluru: Customs officials have arrested a passenger who arrived by Indian Airlines from Dubai and seized 531 grams of gold worth about Rs 27 lakh at Mangalore International Airport on Friday night.

Official sources said, on Saturday that the passenger had arrived from Dubai by Air India Express flight No IX 1384. He had smuggled gold in powder form. Gold of 24-carat purity of 531.390 grams valued at Rs 27,36,659 has been seized.

24/10/20 Ila Dhond/Goa Chronicle

Gold worth Rs 27 lakh seized from passenger at MIA

Mangaluru: Customs officials have arrested a passenger who arrived by Indian Airlines from Dubai and seized 531 grams of gold worth about Rs 27 lakh at Mangalore International Airport on Friday night. 
Official sources said on Saturday that the passenger had arrived from Dubai by Air India Express flight No IX 1384. He had smuggled gold in powder form. Gold of 24-carat purity of 531.390 grams valued at Rs 27,36,659 has been seized. 
24/10/20 UNI