Passengers left fuming as flights get cancelled at KIA
The cancellation of flights on the first day of resuming operations left a lot of people angry and disappointed. On Monday, many flights of different airlines scheduled to Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bagdogra, and Kolkata were cancelled. Many people alleged that airlines informed them about the cancellation only after reaching the airport.
Vishal A., who had booked a flight ticket to Hyderabad, alleged that he had come to the airport after a long travel. “We were told by the airlines staff that the flight was cancelled as per the instruction of the Telangana government. They should have sent a notification in advance and people could have avoided travelling all the way to the airport,” he said.
Airlines have maintained some cancellations were done owing to restrictions imposed on arrival of flights by the respective States. “Due to a change in the State guidelines, affected passengers were provided flexibility to either re-book on alternative flights or transfer their complete booking amount into credit shells for future bookings,” Indigo stated via a release.
For those who did get to fly, the experience was unlike anything before. “I had received a message from the airlines asking me to reach the airport at least two hours in advance but I reached much earlier. Flying during the time of COVID-19 is different experience. I am visiting my parents after a long time and they were very worried about me,” said an IT professional.
BMTC to operate buses to and from airport soon
Meanwhile, Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) will begin services to and from the Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) for the general public.
C. Shikha, Managing Director, BMTC, said the corporation operated 68 buses on Monday to transport people to mandatory institutional quarantine facilities and said the BMTC had consulted the Department of Health and Family Welfare to resume operations to and from the airport.
“We are consulting the Health Department for guidelines on operating buses to and from the airport. Depending on their advice, we will decide whether to operate only non-AC buses or operate both AC and non-AC buses,” she said.
Taxis, cabs back at KIA
Taxis and cabs started operating to and from the city to KIA as it resumed domestic operations from Monday. As per the guidelines of the Health Ministry, only the driver plus two people are allowed in cabs and taxis.
Somashekar.K. of Namma Chalakara Trade Union said that the government should either cancel the airport toll for a few months or reduce the price. “We will also request passengers to go cashless. Many drivers and owners are thinking of having a transparent polyfibre between seats,” he said.
Drivers are also worried about the curfew timings. “As the airport operates 24/7, we will have to be on the road. But there are restrictions from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. The government should look into this issue,” a driver said.
K. Radhakrishna Holla, owner, Cauvery Cars, and president of Karnataka State Travel Operators’ Association, said that a major slump in the taxi business was owing to losing passengers from Delhi and Mumbai, especially businessmen. As these places fell under high-risk areas, institutional quarantine was compulsory for people coming from there.
“Most tourist taxis hardly had any business today. The cancellation of flights led to cancellation of trips in a few cases. From the airport to towards the city, there was no business at all,” he said.