Air India Ukraine bound Boeing 787 aircraft to bring back Indians amid rising conflict in the eastern European country returned safely with more than 250 seats, amidst cheers and sigh of relief. Two more flights will fly to Ukraine on 24th and 26th to bring back Indians.
Air India Ukraine special flight, AI1946, from Kyiv in Ukraine landed in Delhi around 11.30 pm on Tuesday. Those on board were mostly students who were returning after the Indian embassy in Ukraine issued advisories asking them to leave Ukraine temporarily.
The flight AI 1947 took off from the airport here at around 7.30 am and landed at Boryspil International Airport in Kyiv at around 3 pm IST (Indian Standard Time), according to flight tracking websites.
In recent weeks, tensions have been escalating between Ukraine and Russia, and on Monday, Russia recognised the independence of two separatist regions in the eastern Ukraine.
Air India Ukraine Flights to operate on February 22, 24 and 26
On Tuesday, Indian embassy in Kyiv again asked Indian students to temporarily leave the country amid the rising tensions. Air India, on February 19, announced that it would operate three flights between India and Ukraine on February 22, 24 and 26.
Meanwhile, full-service carrier Vistara’s CEO Vinod Kannan on Tuesday said it has no plans to operate flights to Ukraine. “At this time, we are not planning flights to Ukraine because of aircraft limitations and other reasons,” he told media reporters.
On February 17, the civil aviation ministry asked Indian carriers to look at the possibility of operating flights to Ukraine due to the increase in demand. Besides, the ministry had removed the curbs on the number of flights that can be operated between India and the eastern European nation under the bilateral air bubble arrangement to facilitate travel of Indians from that country.