External Affairs Minister V Muraleedharan informed Parliament on Wednesday that talks on the air bubble with Saudi Arabia are on hold as the Kingdom has banned the entry of travellers from India due to the coronavirus pandemic.

In a written reply to the Rajya Sabha, the minister informed that the government has discussed finalizing the draft air bubble arrangement with Saudi Arabia and the talks were postponed due to the entry ban.

V Muraleedharan urged the central government to resume scheduled international flight services to/from India.

G Venkatesh, chairman of the parliamentary committee for transport, tourism and culture, said the committee is favouring for the resumption of scheduled international flights.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic scheduled international flights from India are suspended from March 23, 2020 and recently DGCA of India has extended the suspension of scheduled international flights till 31 August 2021.

The restrictions will not apply to international cargo operations and flights specifically approved by DGCA ie; Vande Bharat Mission and Air Bubbles Arrangements.

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