GOA: Some 25 relief flights carrying more than 4,700 stranded citizens from various countries have departed from the Dabolim International Airport so far, Goa Airport Director Gagan Malik said.
"Team GOA takes pride in sending more than 4,700 passengers around world. It is a dedicated and selfless service of the AAI staff and other stakeholders," Malik told ANI over phone on Saturday.
The official stated that a B777-300 relief flight carrying 406 passengers on board departed from the Goa Airport yesterday night. "It was the 25th relief flight that took off from Goa Airport," he said.
Strict thermal screening and social distancing measures, undertaken to contain the coronavirus spread was maintained at every checking, pre-security and immigration post at the airport, the airport director said.
Hand sanitisers are made available at all key touchpoints on the ground and in the aircraft. Necessary arrangements including food and water are also provided for the passengers who mostly arrive early due to required protocols, the official said.
To contain the spread of the deadly contagion, which has infected more than 14000 people across the country, the Centre has restricted all national and international flights from operating in India. As a result, thousands of foreigners, mostly on a visit to India, remained stranded at various locations within the country. Domestic airlines, along with a few international relief flights, have evacuated most of them so far.
On Friday, Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant said that his State would become COVID-19 free in the next few days.
"Out of the seven cases, only one case is now positive in the State. If all goes well, in the coming days, Goa would become a COVID-19 free state," he said at a press conference.
Sawant further announced that wearing of masks would be made compulsory.
On April 14, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the extension of COVID-19 lockdown till May 3.