India’s aviation regulator has told airlines not to take bookings as the government has not yet decided when to recommence flights after a lockdown scheduled to end on May 3.
The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) issued the notification after some Indian airlines started taking bookings for May 4 onwards.
Indigo, the country’s largest airline, and Vistara, owned by Singapore Airlines and Tata Group, had said earlier they would begin operations in a phased manner from May 4.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi extended the lockdown across India to May 3, from April 14, as the number of coronavirus cases spiked, but permitted some sectors to partially open up after April 20.
“All airlines are hereby directed to refrain from booking tickets … they shall be given sufficient notice and time for restarting operations,” the DGCA notice said.
India has recorded 16,116 cases of the coronavirus, with 519 deaths.