Taranjit Singh Sandhu
, Indian Ambassador to US, on Monday (local time) while speaking about
Vande Bharat Mission
, said that around 40,000 Indian nationals here have registered so far.
"Vande Bharat Mission started in the US on May 7 and now its almost completing one month. We have had about 16 flights so far. We have had about 40,000 Indian nationals who have registered with us. So far, we have been able to take about 5000," he told ANI
"The first phase, we went in a very scientific way. We created a special site on which we got the total numbers. And this is an emergency evacuation flight. So based on the requirements of them going back, the first two phases, 16 flights, 5000 people have gone. Now the third phase will start on June 11 and will go on till July 1," he added.
The phased evacuation is being carried out under phase 2 of the Government of India's ambitious 'Vande Bharat' mission which started on May 16. The third phase of the mission will begin from June 11.
The Ambassador informed that booking for this phase will be done directly by
for people who registered themselves on the Embassy website.
"There are approximately 50 flights which are going to go. But in this phase, the booking will be done directly by Air India for the people who have registered themselves on the embassy website. If somebody has not registered, you can still go and do that. And then towards the end, we will take a look again at what are the total numbers which are left and then it will be decided whether to extend it further or not," he added.
Regarding commercial flights, the Ambassador pointed out that the
Minister of Civil aviation
in India has very recently stated it is under consideration, but they also need to know because different countries are having different rules about permitting international passengers coming in or not.
"So, once they have gone through all that study, a decision will be taken, again, based on international requirements plus the health situation in India, to allow international flights also to come in. As you know, the domestic flights have already started within India," he added.