Amid restrictions, 4 Indian businessmen fly to UAE on Air Arabia flight

Abu Dhabi: Amid the surge in COVID-19 cases and suspension of passenger flights from India, an Indian businessman along with his friends flew from India to the United Arab Emirates on Thursday morning on an Air Arabia flight.

Rashid Abbas, a UAE resident took the flight from Kozhikode, Kerala to Sharjah with his compatriots Mohammed Quti, Farooq, and Naushad. The four businessmen, who had booked the tickets for Rs. 1,72,930 (Dhiram 8,500), were surprised to have the entire plane to themselves.

The United Arab Emirates has allowed investor visa holders and their families to enter the country, despite a travel ban to India since April.

“Business, partner and investor visa holders can enter the UAE if they can create valid documents,” Rashid told Khaleej Times.

He said they had registered with the UAE General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) and Air Arabia before booking their tickets.

“We have obtained the approval of the General Civil Aviation Authority and Air Arabia. We presented our valid Emirates ID, visa and passport to the authorities. We booked our ticket after we got approval, which took about four to five days,” he said.

“The procedure is very easy. UAE residents who are stuck in India due to the travel ban since April 24 have no knowledge of this facility provided by the authorities,” he added.

Earlier in the month of May, a resident of the United Arab Emirates PD Syamalan, managing director of Al Ras group, along with his family flew from India to the United Arab Emirates on a non-public jet for Rs 40,34,249 (Dh202,290).

Also, an Indian businessman Mushtaque Anfar along with his family flew from India to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), in a chartered flight for Rs 54,86, 284 (Dh277,000).

Due to the further suspension of flights untill June 14, there is a huge demand for passenger jets chartered from India and Pakistan, especially from high net worth businessmen.