West Bengal has decided to allow international charter flights carrying Indian nationals with COVID-negative certificates to land at the state airports in an attempt to ease restrictions amid the coronavirus pandemic, a senior official said on Saturday.
The restrictions on Vande Bharat Mission flights will, however, continue, he said.
The state government has written to the Ministry of External Affairs in this connection.
The state government has decided that presently only charter flights, carrying stranded Indian nationals from abroad having a negative test report (RT-PCR) conducted within 96 hours of flight departure may land at airports in Bengal, the letter sent on Friday stated.
Accordingly, you are requested to kindly convey the aforesaid SOP to the Indian Missions and also to the Ministry of Civil Aviation for further necessary action so that the chartered flights following the SOP may be scheduled with effect from August 10, it added.
The airlines should apply for a no-objection certificate (NOC) from the state government, specifying the sponsor, the number of passengers and their details, and an undertaking that all passengers travelling are COVID-negative, as per the standard operating prcedures.
A clearance from the Indian missions in the originating countries or the Ministry of External Affairs is also needed, it said.
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