Amritsar, October 25
After Air India stopped ticket bookings for flights on Amritsar-Rome and Amritsar-Nanded routes from October 31, fliers and aviation experts anticipate that these flights would be eventually be withdrawn.
The thrice a week Nanded-Amritsar direct flight connects two important Sikh temporal seats — Sri Akal Takht Sahib and Takht Sri Hazur Abchal Nagar Sahib in Nanded. It has been flying on the route for the last nearly three years.
Similarly, the booking for once a week Delhi-Amritsar-Rome flight is not available and has been removed from the schedule released on the Air India’s website. The winter schedule starts from October 29 and lasts till March 26, 2022.
These flights are unavailable for bookings in the winter schedule indicating that Air India has either suspended these routes or was pulling out the flights altogether.
The FlyAmritsar Initiative has asked Air India to continue its direct flights from Sri Guru Ram Dass Jee International Airport to Nanded in Maharashtra and Rome in Italy even after October. Its global convener Sameep Singh Gumtala has written letters to Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi and SGPC president Bibi Jagir Kaur to draw their attention over the matter. He urged them to approach Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia over this issue.
Yogesh Kamra, a member of the airport advisory committee, said he was surprised by the Air India’s move as the flights to Nanded and Rome were running with a good flight load of over 70 per cent average occupancy.
Air India’s tweet, however, belies these claims. On October 23 it tweeted: “Fly non-stop from Amritsar to Nanded. For detailed schedule and to book tickets log in to airindia.in.”
“After this tweet, many others including me informed the airlines that the booking from October 31 onwards was not available on its website, but Air India has not responded to it,” he said. — TNS
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