An Air India flight carrying Indians from UAE landed at Chennai International Airport in the early hours of Saturday. Earlier, air India Express flight IX 474, carrying 182 passengers, including 25 children and five infants, from Bahrain landed at Cochin International Airport on Friday, the second day of the Vande Bharat evacuation mission. This is the fourth rescue flight that has landed in India today. Earlier in the day, Air India flight AI 381 carrying 234 passengers landed in New Delhi from Singapore just before noon, an AI 1242 flight from Dhaka in Bangladesh touched down in Srinagar at 2 pm, and the third flight from Riyadh landed in Kerala’s Kozhikode at around 8.10 pm.
Nearly 700 Indian nationals stranded in the Maldives on Thursday set sail on INS Jalashwa as part of the Operation Samudra Setu of the Indian Navy to rescue citizens amid the coronavirus pandemic. 19 pregnant women and 14 children are among the passengers on the ship.
India’s repatriation exercise began on Thursday, with two flights landing in Kerala. An Air India flight from Abu Dhabi landed at Cochin International Airport at around 10 pm, half an hour before another landed at Kozhikode airport from Dubai. Together, there they brought home over 400 passengers.
Through the Vande Bharat Mission, India will send 64 flights and three Navy ships to repatriate Indians stranded abroad due to the coronavirus pandemic. Nearly 15,000 Indians are expected to return home over the next week.