Special AI flights bring back stranded passengers from Leh

"We operated three special flights on Delhi-Leh-Delhi sector today and flew back 331 passengers from Leh who were stranded there due to cloudburst," an Air India spokesperson said.

The Airline charged a single special fare of Rs 9000 instead of regular fare of Rs 11,661 from the passengers, he said. The flights had left Leh at 7.50, 11.05 and 11.40 this morning.

Air India has decided to operate four special flights on Delhi-Leh-Delhi sector tomorrow, and one each additional flight on Jammu-Leh-Jammu sector and Srinagar-Leh-Srinagar sector.

The flights will leave for Delhi at 5.25am, 5.30am, 8.15am and 9.15am tomorrow and the fare will be Rs 9000 only, the spokesperson said.

Since the tragedy, Air India has operated six special flights from Leh out of which five were on Delhi-Leh-Delhi sector and one on Jammu-Leh-Jammu sector and flew back a total number of 553 passengers to Delhi and 103 passengers to Jammu.

Yesterday, the airline had deployed two Airbus 320 aircraft to bring passengers from Leh to Delhi and one from Leh to Jammu.

The Civil Aviation ministry had yesterday asked Air India, Jet airways and Kingfisher airlines to operate three flights each to bring back the stranded passengers for today.
The Ministry had also asked them not to charge exorbitant fare following the complaint from the air travellers.

The Kingfisher airline today operated two flights from Leh to Delhi and brought back 290 tourists.

"We operated today one scheduled flight and an additional flight to bring back the tourists. We deployed Airbus 320 aircraft with a capacity of 175 seats but due to load penalty we could only accommodate 145 passengers in each flights," a Kingfisher spokesperson said.

Load Penalty is the restrictions followed by the airlines which operate to Leh airport to carry a certain amount of load including the passengers and baggages as the airport is situated at high altitude and does not have a long runway.

Meanwhile, Kingfisher will operate four of its flights -- one scheduled and three additional -- from Leh to Delhi tomorrow

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