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India’s Wealthy Flee on Private Jets amid Unfolding Coronavirus Tragedy

Business Insider reports that India’s wealthy are fleeing the country on private jets in the wake of skyrocketing new coronavirus cases.

India has become the new record-holder for coronavirus numbers. The countries healthcare system has become completely overwhelmed, and there is a very serious shortage of available oxygen. On Sunday, 349 691 new Covid-19 cases in the country were reported with 2 767 deaths. Sunday’s COVID 19 related death toll set yet another daily record for India.

According to Business Insider, the shocking numbers are resulting in wealthy Indians paying exorbitant sums for flights and private jets as travel restrictions against India from several countries take effect. At a whopping $38 000 to hire a 13-seater jet from Mumbai to Dubai and $31 000 to hire a six-seater aircraft, an attempt at escape is an option only for the super-rich.

While the United Arab Emirates seems to be a popular destination for the rich, it too had announced that it would be barring travelers from India from entering for 10 days, effective as of April 25. Air Charter Service India said that sudden interest in private jets has been “absolutely crazy.” A spokesperson for the company on Friday said, “We have 12 flights going to Dubai tomorrow and each flight is completely full.”  Enthral Aviation, also a private jet provider, meanwhile said it has been overwhelmed by hundreds of inquiries in recent days. A spokesperson said that Enthral had had to request more aircraft from abroad to meet the urgent demand. It said another popular destination inquired about was Thailand.

Eight private jets have reportedly entered the United Kingdom from India in the last 24 hours alone. The UK has also implemented its own travel ban on India. According to Business Insider, the jets may have cost more than an astronomical £100 000 to charter.

Umm Muhammed Umar

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