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November 2020
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News Headlines
End of an era: Argentina football legend Diego Maradona dies        Greg Barclay elected ICC's Independent Chair        Have great respect for Indian bowlers but our batsmen have seen them a lot: Langer        Rupee rises 6 paise to 73.95 against US dollar in early trade        Biden seeks swift Cabinet votes, but GOP Senate stays silent        As virus cases spike, financial outlook for world's airlines dims        Nivar makes landfall, weakens into severe cyclonic storm        Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel passes away at 71        India's COVID-19 caseload goes past 92 lakh; no. of active cases increases by 6,079        Left Govt moves ahead with projects having no central clearances: Chennithala        Kerala Cabinet decides to approach Governor to repeal new ordinance        Kerala reports 5,420 new COVID cases, 5,149 recoveries: CM        Cyclone Nivar : heavy rain lashes Chennai, suburbs, govt holiday today        UP okays ordinance against conversion for marriage, violators face up to 10 yrs in jail        Govts have to work as team to ensure vaccination drive is smooth, sustained: PM Modi        ICC nominates Kohli, Ashwin for Men''s Player of the Decade Award        Rohit, Ishant to miss first two Australia Tests, also doubtful for remaining two: BCCI source        India''s home series against England to feature four Tests instead of five        Odisha pay the penalty as Hyderabad keep first-ever clean sheet        Looking at India squad, Surya could have been there: Brian Lara        
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Business News
Will try to restart international flights before August: Puri
 
New Delhi: India will try to restart a good percentage of international passenger flights before August, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri on Saturday said, three days after announcing resumption of domestic flights from May 25.

While various states like Karnataka and Maharashtra announced their respective quarantine measures for passengers coming there through domestic flights, the minister said there was no need for quarantine if a passenger is showing green status on Aarogya Setu app.

The minister, while addressing a Facebook Live session, clarified again that the app is not mandatory for air passengers and they can instead give a self-declaration form.

Amid the coronavirus pandemic, few states have questioned the necessity to restart domestic services from Monday, he admitted, adding that some hesitation was expected even as the Centre has been trying to meet their concerns.

Puri said during the session, "I can't put a date on it (restarting international flights). But if somebody says can it be done by August or September? My response is why not earlier depending on what is the situation."

When asked about the minister's announcement on resuming international services, Vistara said it will await instructions and guidelines from the Civil Aviation Ministry. Other airlines did not respond to PTI when asked about this matter.

"I am fully hopeful that before August or September, we will try to start a good percentage of international civil aviation operations, if not complete international operations," he said.

"We must have a more ambitious goal (regarding international flights). Why not start them by mid-June or June-end or in July," he added.

All scheduled commercial passenger flights have been suspended in India since March 25 when the Modi government imposed a lockdown to contain the coronavirus pandemic.

The minister said that the Vande Bharat Mission, which began on May 7, would be able to bring a total 50,000 Indians, who have been stranded abroad, home by the end of this month.

Between May 7 and May 21, around 23,000 Indians have been repatriated through flights operated by Air India and its subsidiary Air India Express under this mission. Passengers have to pay money to book a seat on any repatriation flight being operated under the Vande Bharat Mission.

Puri said India is planning to bring stranded Indians from Sri Lanka through ships or flights under the Vande Bharat Mission.

The minister said if some passengers do not have smartphones, it is not as if they will not be allowed to travel for they do not have the Aarogya Setu app.

"We have said it is an advisory, it is preferable...If you do not have the Aarogya Setu app, you can give a self-declaration form," he stated.

"If someone has Aarogya Setu app, it is like a passport. If you have green status, why should anybody want any quarantine," Puri said.

The app gives colour-coded designation to users as per their health status and travel history. It helps the user know if he or she is near anyone who has tested positive for the deadly virus.

Incase a passenger does not have the app, he or she can get tested for the virus two or three days before the flight's departure, get a medical certificate, and just fill in the form that he or she is COVID-19 negative, Puri noted.

"If you haveA arogya Setu app, and if you have got yourself tested for COVID-19 and have been found negative, and if you do not show any symptoms, then I think there is no need for quarantine," he said.

With the spike in COVID-19 cases weighing heavily upon it, senior officials of the Tamil Nadu government have expressed concerns about resumption of domestic flights from May 25.

While most states are ready, Puri said few states have talked to his "senior colleagues (ministers) and questioned the necessity of restarting domestic flights so soon".

The minister said during the session, "They said the Centre should delay it further by 2-3 days. So, they (ministers) asked the states to send the concerns in writing. But the states did not."

"This will keep going on. When we are dealing with a situation like this, we should expect that there would be some hesitation. But it is our (Centre's) responsibility and we should make efforts to make those concerns.


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KERALA NEWS
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INTERNATIONAL NEWS
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NATIONAL NEWS
Nivar makes landfall, weakens into severe cyclonic storm
 Chennai: Very severe cyclonic storm Nivar made landfall near Puducherry in the early hours of Thursd
Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel passes away at 71
India's COVID-19 caseload goes past 92 lakh; no. of active cases increases by 6,079
Cyclone Nivar : heavy rain lashes Chennai, suburbs, govt holiday today
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