Finally, India and Germany air bubble agreement come to a ‘fair’ resolution as Germany’s flag carrier Lufthansa has now agreed to operate 10 weekly flights in India against 20 flights that it was operating till the 1st week of October.
On the other side, Indian national carrier Air India was operating only three to four flights in Germany leading to a disparity in the number of flights that contradict the air bubble agreement, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation said earlier.
“Flights between India & Germany recommence under air bubble arrangement. Lufthansa will operate from Delhi (4 days), Mumbai (3 days) & Bengaluru (3 days). Air India will operate 5 weekly flights from Delhi & 2 every week from Bengaluru to Frankfurt.” Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri, tweeted.
Flights between India & Germany recommence under air bubble arrangement. Lufthansa will operate from Delhi (4 days), Mumbai (3 days) & Bengaluru (3 days). @airindiain will operate 5 weekly flights from Delhi & 2 every week from Bengaluru to Frankfurt.@MoCA_GoI— Hardeep Singh Puri (@HardeepSPuri) October 21, 2020Advertisement
Now it’s been decided that the German carrier Lufthansa will operate 10 flights — four to and from Delhi, three to and from Mumbai, and the other three to and from Bengaluru. Out of Air India’s seven flights every week, five will be to and from Delhi and two to and from Bengaluru.
Owing to the disparity in numbers, India, Germany air bubble — an agreement between two countries to permit their airlines to operate both-way travels — stood suspended. All flights between the 2 countries were canceled till October 20.
On October 16, Air India announced its resumption of flights to Germany starting from October 26. It also said that the schedule will continue till March 28, 2021.
Union civil aviation minister Hardeep Singh Puri had said earlier that foreign carriers won’t be allowed if that comes in way of Indian carriers. Reports said Germany wasn’t ready to increase the number of Air India flights because it was apprehensive of importing Covid-19 cases from India.
With Lufthansa flying 10 per week and Air India seven, the parity remains but the ministry had said earlier that it had been not insisting on total parity. Even near-parity will do, Hardeep Singh Puri had said.