Pakistan resumes domestic flights under strict regulations
Karachi - Pakistan resumed
domestic flights between major cities for the first time in
nearly two months on Saturday with the requirement that face
masks be worn and vacant seats left between passengers,
International flights will remain suspended till May 31.
The first Pakistan International Airline (PIA) flight
carrying 84 passengers departed from Karachi for Lahore at 1300
local time (0800 GMT), along with flights for Lahore and
Islamabad operated by a private airline, local media reported.
“In view of the difficulties faced by passengers in
traveling between major cities, the Federal Government has
allowed limited domestic flight operations from five major
airports, Islamabad, Karachi, Lahore, Peshawar and Quetta with
effect from May 16,” said a statement issued by the Aviation
Domestic and chartered flight operations will require
disinfection of the aircraft prior to boarding, at least one
vacant seat between the passengers and compulsory wearing of
masks and use of hand sanitizers. No food and beverages will be
allowed during domestic flights, the statement added.
On Saturday, the Aviation ministry released pictures of
passengers seated with a gap of a seat in the flights. Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday said that the country
could not afford an indefinite lockdown and the nation would
have to learn to live with the pandemic.
At a press briefing along with some cabinet members, Khan
said he wanted to tell the country’s medical community that
lifting the lockdown was imperative to provide jobs to 25
million informal laborers and workers.
Pakistan has reported over 38 000 cases of infection from
the new coronavirus, and 834 deaths.