The flights between Bangladesh-Kolkata that were to resume on Sunday have been called off as an agreement on the resumption of flights could not be reached between the aviation authorities.
"We had scheduled the resumption of flights from Sunday with the other two weekly services on Tuesday and Thursday. But we have not received permission from Indian authorities. Once an agreement is signed, we will announce the new dates," a Biman Bangladesh official said, report Times of India.
Indian airlines SpiceJet and IndiGo flights that were also scheduled to resume will now be cancelled. While SpiceJet was supposed to start services on August 26, IndiGo was to start flights the next day.
Bangladesh Biman on Wednesday formally announced flights to Kolkata and Delhi from August 22. Biman Managing Director and CEO Dr Abu Saleh Mostafa Kamal said that they are yet to get any directions from Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh (Caab) to resume flights with India.
Asked about Biman's announcement of resuming flights to India from August 22, he said, "Like other airlines of the country, we have announced this as part of our preparations to operate flights."
Bangladesh suspended all international flights to and from Bangladesh on April 14 after the start of the second wave of coronavirus in the country. After being closed for 16 days, operation of international flights resumed from May 1 except for 12 countries including India.
Sources at the Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh and the Association of Travel Agents of Bangladesh said around 20 lakh Bangladeshis visit India every year by air and many of them go there for treatment.
Bangladesh Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen on August 17 said flight operations between Bangladesh and India would resume on August 20.
But a senior official of Caab said that they are yet to get any formal reply from their Indian counterparts about resuming flights with Bangladesh.
Amid this situation, several hundred Bangladeshis -- most of whom went to India for medical purposes -- remained uncertain about their return home. The situation is the same for the Bangladeshis who have long been waiting to go to India for treatment.