MUMBAI: The disagreement between the Centre and the Maharashtra government over the date for restart of domestic flight operations is likely to hit thousands of passengers who have already booked tickets.
On Thursday, airlines had opened bookings for tickets on flights scheduled next week following a tweet on Wednesday by the civil aviation minister stating that domestic operations will be restarted from May 25. “In the next 24 hours, if the impasse is not resolved, airlines will have to carry out major rescheduling of their operations as a number of flights have been routed through Mumbai, India’s second busiest airport,” said an airline official.
An air traffic control official said, “Mumbai airport was supposed to handle about 100 arrivals and 100 departures from May 25. If the ban on domestic travel continues in Maharashtra, airlines will have to change the timings and routings of a number of flights across the country as many flights would have been routed through Mumbai, Pune or Nagpur.” For a number of passengers stranded because of the lockdown, it would mean another round of cancellations, seeking refunds or rescheduling.