International flights Latest News: Amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the government has decided to further suspend scheduled international commercial passenger services to/from India till November 30, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) said on Wednesday. “Suspension on scheduled international commercial passenger services to/from India extended till November 30,” the aviation regulator said.

The DGCA further stated that the above restrictions will not apply to international all-cargo operations and flights specially approved by it. Also, the aviation regulator stated that international scheduled flights may be allowed on selected routes by the “competent authority” on case to case basis.

Following is the DGCA circular:

The DGCA’s announcement comes a day after the Union Ministry of Home Affairs extended the guidelines for re-opening issued on September 30th till November 30, 2020.

As things stand, India has bilateral air bubbles in place with as many as 19 countries.

India’s Air Bubble Agreements

India has bilateral air bubbles in place with as many as 18 countries. To further widen its international civil aviation operations, India recently entered into an air bubble arrangement with Bangladesh.

As per the agreement, the Indian and Bangladeshi airline carriers will operate 28 flights each per week between the two countries.

A bilateral air bubble is a mechanism to resume flights between India and other countries with preconditions, which regulate movement in view of covid-19.

Scheduled international passenger services have been suspended in India since March 23 due to the coronavirus pandemic. But special international flights have been operating under the Vande Bharat Mission since May and under bilateral “air bubble” arrangements with select countries since July.

Mean-while, All schools in Delhi will continue to be closed till further orders in view of the COVID-19 situation, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia announced on Wednesday. Parents are not in favor of reopening schools either, Sisodia said at an online press conference. “We keep getting feedback from parents that they are really concerned about whether it is safe to reopen schools. It is not. Wherever schools have reopened, COVID-19 cases among children have risen. So we have decided that as of now schools in the national capital will not reopen. They will continue to be closed till further orders,” Sisodia said.

With 43,893 new cases, infections in India are now close to 8 million. As many as 508 deaths were reported in the last 24 hours, taking the toll to 1,20,010. Of the 79,90,322 cases, 6,10,803 are active infections, while 72,59,509 patients have been discharged. Kerala is the largest contributor of cases for the fifth consecutive day

In its latest unlock guidelines for November, the government said there has been no change in the guidelines. The Ministry of Home Affairs in a statement said the Unlock 5.0 guidelines that last month allowed for reopening of cinemas, theatres, and multiplexes with up to 50 percent of their seating capacity will remain in force till November 30. The order further said that lockdown shall continue to be implemented strictly in the containment zones till November 30, 2020. Earlier, the guidelines for reopening activities issued on September 30 were to be in force till October 31.