The Ministry of Civil Aviation (MOCA) has directed Air India Express and Jet Airways to operate additional flights between Doha and Indian cities after some Gulf countries led by Saudi Arabia cut ties with Qatar. The flights will help bring back Indian nationals unable to get bookings.
Earlier this month, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egypt banned Qatari planes from landing in their countries and had forbidden them from using their airspace. Subsequently, Etihad Airways suspended its operations to Doha from Mumbai.
The ministry further indicated that additional services will ensure timely movement of Indian passengers to Doha. “External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had spoken to Minister of Civil Aviation Ashok Gajapathi Raju on June 19. They discussed operating additional flights to Doha for Indians unable to get bookings,” an official statement from MOCA said.
The Ministry has called to operate an additional flight on June 22 and June 23 by Jet Airways from Doha to Mumbai. The flight will also be directed back to Doha for Indian passengers.
According to sources in Jet Airways, while the airline operated an extra service to Doha Thursday, they will operate an additional service on Friday. Air India Express will operate additional flights between Doha and Thiruvananthapuram for four days next week.
Conveying that Indians are safe in Qatar, Gopal Baglay, officials spokesperson, Ministry of External Affairs, said, “There is no need to evacuate Indians from Qatar… every single Indian is safe.”