New Delhi: India and the UAE have agreed to allow their airlines to carry eligible passengers on both legs of their charter flights between the two countries to be operated from July 12 to July 26, the Ministry of Civil Aviation said on Thursday.
Currently, an Indian carrier operating a repatriation flight from the United Arab Emirates is not allowed to carry any passenger from here to the Gulf country. Similarly, a UAE carrier cannot carry passengers on the first leg of the charter flight -- from the UAE to India.
Many Indian nationals who have valid residence permits of the UAE and are currently in India have been complaining on social media for the last few weeks about the lack of flights between the two countries. India suspended all scheduled international passenger flights on March 23 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Air India Express CEO K Shyam Sundar said on Twitter: "Happy to announce Air India Express has opened its flights between 12th and 26th July from India to UAE for sale to Indians with UAE Resident Permits."
Sundar's tweet came after the Civil Aviation Ministry announced on the microblogging site, "As part of the close strategic partnership between the governments of India and the UAE, and with a view to assisting UAE resident nationals who are at present in India to return to the UAE, the civil aviation authorities of both countries have agreed to operationalise the following arrangement from 12 July 2020."
Charter flights operated by UAE carriers will now be permitted to bring Indian citizens from the UAE to India and carry 'ICA-approved UAE residents' on their return leg, the ministry said.
ICA stands for the UAE's Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship. A passenger having a valid residency permit of the UAE needs to take ICA approval before taking any flight to enter that country.
The Civil Aviation Ministry said, "Indian carriers operating repatriation flights to bring Indian citizens from UAE to India will be allowed to carry the ICA-approved UAE residents (returning to UAE from India) on the outward journey from India to UAE."
On India to UAE journey, all these flights will carry only those passengers who are destined for the Gulf country, the Civil Aviation Ministry noted. This arrangement will be initially in place for a period of 15 days -- from July 12 to July 26 -- and will be reviewed after that, it added.
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Southampton: Pakistan slumped to 126-5 before a third stoppage for rain led to an end to play on the first day of the second test against England at the Rose Bowl on Thursday.
Abid Ali struck 60 after being dropped twice early in his 111-ball innings and was comfortably Pakistan's top scorer on a tough day for the tourists in changing weather.
Jimmy Anderson was retained for the match, despite struggling in England's three-wicket win in the first test in Manchester last week, and the paceman repaid that faith by removing Shan Masood (1) in the third over and captain Azhar Ali (20) after lunch. It gave England's record wicket-taker figures of 2-35 and he is up to 592 in tests.
After the toss won by Pakistan was made under sunny skies, Pakistan began batting in overcast conditions and a shower brought up an early lunch. More rain came midway through the second session, which the tourists finished on 85-2.
And only about an hour was possible after tea, when Pakistan lost three wickets including Abid, who edged recalled seamer Sam Curran to Rory Burns at second slip.
Burns had been the second slip fielder to drop Abid before lunch, the right-handed opener having already been given a life on 0 by Dom Sibley's drop diving to his left at third slip.
As with Burns, Sibley made amends by taking a smart catch low down to remove Asad Shafiq (5) to give Stuart Broad his first wicket.
That brought Fawad Alam to the crease for his first test innings in 11 years after being recalled and it last four balls, when the left-hander was trapped lbw by Chris Woakes for a duck. A not-out decision was given but England reviewed and Hawk-Eye showed the ball was hitting the top of middle stump.
Babar Azam was 25 not out when bad light eventually led to stumps being called. Mohammad Rizwan was on 4.
Pakistan trails 1-0 in the three-match series. Another victory for England will clinch a first test series against Pakistan in 10 years, and a second series of this pandemic-affected summer having already beaten the West Indies.