Flights from Calcutta to Bangladesh start on October 28
Flight services between Calcutta and Bangladesh will resume on October 28 and many airlines have already planned their schedules, airport officials said on Thursday.
Airlines are planning to resume flight operations from Calcutta to Dhaka and Chittagong in the first week of November, according to officials of several airlines.
One of the most popular international routes from Calcutta, commercial flights to Dhaka had been stalled because of the pandemic. Only a few evacuation flights had operated a few months ago.
“An air travel bubble will be established between India and Bangladesh with effect from October 28 and will remain valid till January 31 next year or till the resumption of scheduled international flights, whichever is earlier,” the Centre has said in a letter to the directorate general of civil aviation.
“Designated carriers of both countries will be permitted to operate services between India and Bangladesh under the bubble.”
An air bubble is an arrangement between two countries to operate commercial passenger flights as regular services have been stalled because of the pandemic.
SpiceJet, IndiGo, Air India, GoAir and Vistara are the Indian carriers allowed to operate flights to Dhaka and Chittagong from Calcutta, Delhi, Chennai and Mumbai as part of the agreement.
They can operate up to 28 flights in a week from these cities. Biman Bangladesh, US Bangla Airlines and NovoAir are the Bangladesh carriers, which can operate a similar number of flights, according to the letter.
On Thursday, US Bangla Airlines officials told tour operators in Calcutta that they would start daily flight services between Calcutta and Dhaka soon.
Biman Bangladesh plans to start services from November 1, an official of the airline said. “We have been given the rights to operate daily flights but we’ll start with three flights a week and can add more depending on the demand.”
SpiceJet will start operating on the Calcutta-Dhaka route from the first week of November, an official of the airline said.
“Bangladesh is a very big sector for Calcutta. Medical tourism, trade, small and medium-scale hotels and restaurants heavily depend on people from Bangladesh,” Anil Punjabi, chairman, east, Travel Agents Federation of India, said.
“We had requested both the state and the Centre to allow flight operations. We are happy with the resumption of services.”
Metro had earlier written how small and medium-scale hotels, eateries and foreign exchange stores suffered huge losses because people from Bangladesh were unable to visit India.
A few patients from Bangladesh have been coming by road to the country with medical visas. Airlines expect more patients to reach Calcutta from Bangladesh with the resumption of flights, according to operators.umption of services," said Anil Punjabi, chairman, east, Travel Agents Federation of India.
Metro had earlier written how small and medium scale hotels, eateries and foreign exchange stores were suffering huge losses because the Bangladeshi nationals were unable to come. Few patients from Bangladesh have started coming with medical visas by road. Airline operators said they were expecting more patients to come to calcutta from Bangladesh now that flights would resume.