All the charter flights from India have been restricted by the US government on Monday claiming it has violated a treaty governing aviation between the two nations. Us also accused India of “unfair and discriminatory practices.”
The coronavirus has caused lockdowns to most of the countries all over the world and thereby making people stranded in different countries. Air India Ltd. has been manufacturing flights to send back citizens to their own countries and also selling tickets to the public, the Transport Department alleged.
Air India is advertising flights “that would constitute a rate of 53 percent of the scheduled services it operated before the onset of the current public health emergency,” the department said.
“Considering this rate of flying, and that Air India is selling tickets on the market, the charters go beyond true repatriations, and it appears that Air India may be using repatriation charters as a way of circumventing the GoI-imposed prohibition of scheduled services.”
The DOT said in a directive that U.S airlines have been restricted from making any flight to India by aviation regulators there. During a press release, the situation “creates a competitive disadvantage for U.S. carriers. The department further alleged that Air India is advertising a schedule that is more than half of pre-pandemic operations.
The U.S agency claimed, “The charters go beyond true repatriations, and it appears that Air India may be using repatriation charters as a way of circumventing” that nation’s flight restrictions.
According to the department, the order will come into effect within 30 days. India should apply to the DOT for authorization before conducting charter flight so that it can closely observe them, said the directive. Once India removes the restrictions on U.S carriers,it will reconsider whether to lift the restrictions or not.
Just a few weeks ago, the US accused Chinese airlines of unfairly banning American carriers in the wake of the virus. On June 15, the U.S declared that it will agree to allow four flights a week from China after it allowed the same number by carriers.