The British Government has flown home 16,500 passengers, mostly British nationals, from various parts of India during the past 38 days. The British government has no plans for any further special flight from anywhere India to lift back home any stranded British national. The British government had organised 64 special flights from various destinations, including Amritsar, from India.
It was a huge logistical operation run by the UK Government, as more than 16,500 travelers were taken home from India. The British Government had run 64 special charter flights in the past 38 days to return stranded British nationals from 32 locations, across the length and breadth of India.
Almost half of the Brits repatriated globally thus far on UK charter flights have been from India. It has been a large and complex operation with over 500 members of staff in India working around the clock to ensure flights operated smoothly and passengers could reach airports. The strict lockdown in place across India meant it was vital to work hand-in-hand with the Government of India and local authorities to transport passengers over large distances. One British national stranded in a remote village in Manipur had to travel more than 2,700 km for his flight home from New Delhi.
Jan Thompson, Acting High Commissioner to India, said: “The last currently scheduled charter flight left for London Heathrow from Amritsar today with over 300 passengers on board. This unprecedented repatriation effort would not have been possible without the excellent support of the Indian Government. Continued cooperation between our nations will be essential in the fight against this pandemic.”
Since the outbreak of coronavirus, the UK Government has helped 1.3 million Britons from around the world return on commercial flights and organised special charter flights from 27 different countries and territories. No further special flights are planned but the UK Government will continue to watch the situation. These flights were organised for British Nationals. Where possible, seats were also allocated to vulnerable non-British UK residents with Indefinite Leave to Remain and to other foreign nationals.