Bahrain Air is yet to receive approval from the Indian authorities to recommence its newly launched flights to India’s southern state of Kerala. The airline had to scrap the service owing to the hold-up in getting mandatory permits.

Bahrain Air, the second national carrier of Bahrain, is awaiting permission from the Indian authorities to operate flights to India’s southern city of Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala.

On March 15, the airline announced launch of new flights to India that would land at Thiruvananthapuram airport but on March 26 due to the delay in getting operating clearances and permits, it suspended them.

Officials are waiting for approval from the Indian Civil Aviation Ministry to recommence flights to Thiruvananthapuram, three weeks after they were cancelled.

Bahrain Air’s Chief Executive Richard Nuttall told a publication in Dubai that the airline was still awaiting the go-ahead from India’s aviation chiefs. He held responsible the bureaucracy for dragging out disruption, but also hoped that the carrier would be able to continue Kerala services soon.

“The delay is happening as a number of people are involved in signing documents,” explained Nuttall.

“We are in touch with authorities through phones and e-mails, but we are optimistic and awaiting a positive response from the Indian Civil Aviation Affairs Authority by today,” the newspaper quoted Nuttall.

Bahrain Air has been a popular option among budget travellers and with the airline offering Kerala bound travel, passengers were expecting to get their hands around tickets on cheap flights to India.

“Bahrain Air expresses its unreserved apologies to the affected passengers. Our management, staff and partners are working around the clock to minimise to the greatest extent possible the disruptions caused to our valued passengers for reasons beyond our control,” the airline had said in its press release earlier.

The Gulf Daily News, which quoted Nuttall, also stated that a contractual dispute that grounded flights on the new Kerala service had cost the airline $500,000.

The carrier had been hoping flights would resume on Thursday, says the report.

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