Monday, November 02, 2020

633,000 expats fly to India, 220,000 return to UAE

Dubai: With non-emergency travel from the UAE to India during COVID-19 pandemic picking up drastically, the number of passengers, who have travelled since May 7 has reached 633,000, according to the Indian missions here. Meanwhile, more than 220,000 passengers have flown to the UAE from India since July 12.

As many as 635,000 Indians here had registered for repatriation ever since the Indian missions opened an e-registration service on April 29 for Vande Bharat Mission (VBM), dubbed to be India’s largest repatriation mission. However, several people, who had registered, had changed their mind after offices reopened and economic activities resumed in the UAE.

Though the missions stopped the registration for stranded Indians in August following the smooth operation of an Air Bubble agreement with the UAE, they have been collecting the database of Indians flying home during the pandemic from both Indian and UAE airlines.

As of October 31, 633,000 people have travelled to India since the start of VBM on May 7, according to the figures with the missions revealed to Gulf News.

The Indian Ambassador to the UAE Pavan Kapoor said that more than 220,000 Indians have also flown back from India to the UAE since July 12. Indians form the largest expatriate community in the UAE, with more than 3.42million estimated to have been living in the country pre-pandemic era.

01/11/20 Sajila Saseendran/Gulf News

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