Air India Flight Returns to Delhi as Ukraine Closes Airspace

Story Highlights
  • Ukraine bound Air India flights return home.
  • Ukraine issues NATOM as airspace is compromised.
  • The notice came after Putin declared an attack in the eastern province of the country.

New Delhi: Air Indian flights designated to ferry stranded Indians in Ukraine have been returning to New Delhi after the Ex-Soviet Union suspended all Civil air services as Russians initiated an attack. This was the second aircraft out of the three by the Tata-owned carrier services that were deployed to ferry back Indians under Vande Bharat Mission. The flight decided to return after a NOTAM, or notice to all airmen was sent to all flights heading to Ukraine. Officials also report, the destruction of Ukrainian airbases.

The first flight, Boeing 787 carrying 240 passengers touched down at New Delhi airport on Tuesday midnight.

Russian President in a surprise announcement on Thursday morning, called ‘ a special military operation’ directing forces to enter into eastern areas of Ukraine, which Putin recognized as independent nations. The announcement triggered immediate condemnation from US President and other allies.

Shortly after the announcement, a series of explosions were heard in Ukraine’s capital and several other cities. Ukrainian guards reported being taken down at the Russian and Belarusian frontiers. Hundreds of the country’s servicemen are believed to have been killed, a Ukrainian official quoted.

Indian embassy a week ago had instructed all its citizens to leave Ukraine immediately citing the intelligence reports that predicted an invasion ‘ any time’. The embassy had released helpline numbers and E-mail IDs for immediate help.

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