Travelers wait seven hours as the airline refuses to accept results of Tiruchy airport’s Covid Rapid PCR tests, claiming they do not meet Dubai’s requirements TIRUCHY:
- The Air India Express (AIE) decision to divert its Dubai-bound flight carrying 134 passengers to Sharjah on Thursday, saying that the Dubai airport authorities were not ready to accept the Rapid PCR tests taken at the Tiruchy airport, led to tense moments and arguments at the airport.
- The Dubai flight, which was recorded to take off at 9.25 am from the Tiruchy airport, had to wait for seven hours, before the airlines finally decided to take the passengers to Sharjah preferably of Dubai.
- Still, passengers waiting for the Dubai flight were in for a shock on Thursday during AIE informed them that the Dubai airport was not able to accept the test reports taken at the Tiruchy airport.
The take-off got delayed for several hours owing to the confusion and passengers were stressed when the airline was still not able to come up with a solution.
According to sources, the Tiruchy airport has only one machine, like what had been specified by the Dubai authorities, and most of the test results were coming from other machines.
So, the AIE was hesitant to accept the results, fearing they might be rejected on reaching the destination.
- “Dubai airport has specifically mentioned a particular machine for the Rapid PCR test at airports in India. The lab at Tiruchy airport has only one such machine.
Consequently, the airline was forced to divert the flight to Sharjah. The airline took up the matter with Dubai and we got the approval for all the machines that Tiruchy is currently using,” said the Air India Express chief of corporate communications.
Meanwhile, Tiruchy Airport director S Dharmaraj dismissed the allegation that the airport did not have the facilities specified for passengers heading to Dubai.
“We are already providing the facility as per the requirement. In fact, IndiGo operated a Dubai flight with the same facility from Tiruchy on Thursday evening. IndiGo’s Dubai flight with 160 passengers took off at 5:34 pm,” he said.
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