Australia's first repatriation flight out of India takes off

Qantas guidelines for passengers from

Qantas guidelines for passengers from

The plane touched down in Darwin after picking up vulnerable passengers from New Delhi.

But 70 passengers were later barred from travel after testing positive for coronavirus or coming into close contact with others who were.

The repatriation flights facilitated by the Australian government for its stranded citizens in India resumed from Friday following a two weeks ban due to the COVID-19 health crisis in India.

Nearly 10,000 Australians, permanent residents and their immediate family members are seeking to return to Australia with around 1,000 who have been prioritised as "vulnerable" for health or financial reasons.

However, it's understood almost half of the 150 passengers were not allowed on the plane due to COVID-19 test results. They will take a second test eight hours before flying.

Payne said this temporary pause had helped mitigate the risk of potentially higher rates of infection presenting on arrival in Australia and ensured the quarantine system was able to receive further flights.

Australian politician Penny Wong, the Labor party spokesperson on foreign affairs, noted one of the stories of a man from Melbourne who had tested positive for Covid-19.

CDC Mask Guidance Remains In Place For Airline Travel
An order signed by President Joe Biden also remains in effect requiring masks for domestic and global travel. "A lot of it has to do with the percentage of people being vaccinated".

'Until such time that they test negative they won't be able to fly on one of these facilitated flights'. "Regrettably those people will have to return home and deal with the Covid that they have, or continue to isolate to prove that they don't have Covid", he told ABC in an interview.

It means a total of 70 people are no longer able catch the repatriation flight, which had a total of 150 seats booked. "We just want to know what is going on", Sunny told ABC. They've called on the government to allow more commercial airlines to fly from India to Australia.

Wong tweeted that the situation that Australians like "Sunny and his mother are in is heartbreaking".

QF112 departed New Delhi at 20.05 Friday (00.35 Saturday AEST) from Terminal 3 of Indira Gandhi International Airport, according to the airport's live flight information.

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said there would be more capacity for people to return to Australia on other flights scheduled in May.

Despite the requirement for pre-departure testing, health authorities at the Howard Springs quarantine facility are preparing to handle cases of the mutated COVID-19 strain now spreading in India.

At that time, the PM announced that the first three flights would take place on 15, 23 and 30 May, and would be flown direct to Darwin to undergo two-weeks quarantine at its Howard Springs quarantine facility. This pushed the country's case count to 2,40,46,809 since the pandemic broke out in January a year ago.

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