Vande Bharat Mission Photograph:( WION )
The special flight departed from Suvarnabhumi International Airport, Bangkok, carrying 236 Indian nationals who were stranded in Thailand due to the closure of international air travel in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
Air India's flight from Thailand carrying Indian nationals is scheduled to arrive in New Delhi on Wednesday evening. This is the first special flight arranged by the Government of India to repatriate Indian nationals stranded in Thailand -- due to the closure of international air travel in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic -- as part of the Vande Bharat Mission.
The special flight departed from Suvarnabhumi International Airport, Bangkok, carrying 236 Indian nationals.
The Indian nationals were stranded in different parts of Thailandincluding Phuket, Krabi, Pattaya and Chiang Mai, besides Bangkok.
"Check-in of passengers for AI335 - Bkk - Del. First repatriation flight from Thailand to India. Embassy personnel led by HoC Pankaj Sharma help in the procedures and distribute food and water - with a smile!" the Indian Embassy in Thailand wrote on Twitter.
Earlier, the Indian mission team led by Attache Titus Eduri had arranged bus services to escort nationals stranded in Phuket and Pattaya, located 150 kilometres from Bangkok.
Ambassador of India, HE SuchitraDurai, accompanied by Embassy officials, greeted and interacted with the passengers at the Suvarnabhumi airport before seeing them off.
On May 13, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri had said that the second phase of Vande Bharat from May 16 to 22 would include flights from Armenia, Australia, Belarus, Canada, France, Georgia, Germany, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Nepal, Nigeria, Russia, Tajikistan, Thailand and Ukraine.
"In 1st phase of Vande Bharat, we were to bring back 14,800 Indians on 64 flights. 8,500 Indians have already returned till this morning. More flights are underway. In the 2nd phase, the numbers are being doubled. 30,000 more Indians will return from 31 countries on 149 flights," he said.