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Only repatriation flights by Indian carriers operate between India and Singapore; 'about 25' passengers arrive each day

Only repatriation flights by Indian carriers operate between India and Singapore; 'about 25' passengers arrive each day

FILE PHOTO: Air India Express Boeing 737. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

SINGAPORE: Singapore receives about 25 arrivals from India each day, with the vast majority of passengers Singapore citizens and permanent residents, three ministries said in a joint statement on Sunday (May 23). 

"Currently the only passenger flights between Singapore and India are Vande Bharat flights chartered by the Indian government to bring back their citizens," said the Ministry of Transport (MOT), the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) and the Ministry of Manpower (MOM).

"The Indian government also allows those who need to return to Singapore to take the outbound flight because these are the only available passenger flights into Singapore."

All such flights currently operate out of Terminal 1. 

Vande Bharat is a programme by the Indian government to repatriate Indian nationals from around the world.

"These flights are operated only by Indian carriers designated by the Indian government, with the approval of the Singapore Government," said the ministries. 

Air India and Air India Express are among the airlines that operate these repatriation flights. 

"There is an average of about 180 departing passengers on these flights back to India and about 25 arrivals to Singapore each day. 

"The vast majority of passenger arrivals to Singapore are returning Singapore citizens and permanent residents," said MOT, MFA and MOM. 

READ: COVID-19: Singapore to stop entry for all long-term pass holders, short-term visitors with recent travel history to India
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India banned all international passenger flights to and from Singapore in March 2020. Singapore Airlines can only operate cargo flights to India. 

All arriving passengers at Changi Airport must take two COVID-19 tests on arrival - an antigen rapid test and a polymerase chain reaction test. 

"They are escorted from disembarkation through to their dedicated transport to go to the stay-home notice facilities for 21 days," said the ministries. 

From Apr 24, all long-term pass holders and short-term visitors with recent travel history, including transit, to India within the past 14 days were not allowed entry into or transit through Singapore. This was further tightened on May 8, with border measures for incoming travellers determined according to their recent travel history in the past 21 days to higher-risk countries or regions, up from the previous 14-day travel history period.

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Source: CNA/vc(rw)

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