With the permission of the Civil Aviation Authority, it was decided to operate special flights from April 17 to five labor-friendly countries, including Biman Bangladesh Airlines, Saudi Arabia and Doha. But the state-owned airline could not operate flights on the Dhaka-Singapore route even though it started flying to four countries till yesterday.However, a flight of Biman Bangladesh Airlines (Boeing-737) with 162 passengers is scheduled to leave Hazrat Shahjalal International in Dhaka on Tuesday morning after receiving permission to operate a special flight from the Singapore government on Sunday. Due to the non-launch of this flight, many expatriate Bangladeshi workers have lost their jobs due to visa complications. They demanded to be sent to the airport on Sunday.
A source close to Biman’s Balaka Bhaban told Naya Digant yesterday that Biman Bangladesh Airlines had started operating special flights on Jeddah, Dammam, Riyadh, Doha, Dubai and Muscat routes in Saudi Arabia from April 16 but it was not possible to operate Biman flights to Singapore due to lack of landing permission. In response to the workers’ demands, the aviation authorities brought permission to operate a special flight from Singapore on Sunday night. As such, the 182-seat (Boeing-737) aircraft will leave Dhaka for Singapore at 6.25 am on Tuesday, April 20. The seat capacity of this aircraft is 162 people. But three passengers will go less because of Kovid.
Apart from Jeddah, Dammam and Riyadh in Saudi Arabia, Biman Bangladesh Airlines has also operated special and cargo flights to Dubai, Muscat, Bangkok and Hong Kong since yesterday morning. At this time, the private airline US Bangla Airlines and other foreign airlines have left for special flights. The official in charge of the airline told Naya Digant yesterday that even though the special flights took passengers from Dhaka, the flights had to return to Dhaka without passengers while returning from those countries. Because of the 16 difficult conditions that have been given to Covid from Civil Aviation, there are no passengers from abroad to come to Dhaka. In that case, the airlines have to count the losses as they operate flights with only one-way passengers.
However, another Civil Aviation source said that a day earlier, the Civil Aviation Authority had informed the airlines that the return flight from abroad would be able to carry 100 passengers in small aircraft (Boeing-737) and 150 passengers in large aircraft including Boeing-8. Air Vice Marshal M Mofidur Rahman, chairman of the Civil Aviation Authority, was repeatedly contacted to find out the truth, but his mobile phone was found busy.