The national flag carrier Nepal Airlines has initiated its flight to a debut sector in Japan to Narita International Airport after cancelling its Osaka flights for time being on Monday. The flight was made successfully and with a lot of excitement apparently. The flag carrier also had obtained grand water cannon salute at the gate of Narita Airport as welcoming. However, the carrier has now faced blame of denying the orders from Supreme Court to stop flying to and fro from the Coronavirus infected five countries that includes China, South Korea, Japan, Iran and Italy.
Archana Khadka, spokesperson for NAC, defended the decision to go ahead with the Narita flight saying, “We had been working to launch this sector for a very long time and tickets were already booked for the inaugural flight.” She claimed that the corporation had not received any objection letter or notice regarding flight operations to Japan. She hastened to add that NAC would halt flights after receiving formal order from the apex court.
As a step towards the prevention of Corona COVID-19 Virus prevention, the government of Nepal has decided to restrict the entry of citizens from 5 most affected countries to Nepal in Visa-on-arrival entry as well as restrict all the flight coming to and fro from the countries. The citizens from the above-mentioned countries shall need to obtain a visa prior to their travel from the embassies of Nepal in the respective countries from now on. The suspension on the visa process will last from March 7 to March 31. The flag carrier had flown to Japan a day after the decision to restrict the flight was made.
The flight took of with 234 passengers from Nepal yesterday and returned with 265 passengers, according to NAC. NAC has initiated flights to Narita, shifting its service from Osaka. A jumbo team of government representatives also travelled to Narita on its inaugural flight. The Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation had announced yesterday that no formal programme would be conducted during the inaugural flight on the Kathmandu-Narita route.