Covid struck aviation industry suffers human toll

New Delhi, Jun 5 (IANS): The second wave of Covid-19 pandemic that has been much brutal version of its earlier outbreak last year, has not only devastated India's civil aviation sector economically but took a high casualty toll.

Considered to be one of the most essential service during the pandemic period, the sector, has lost countless employees during the second wave.

According to industry insiders over 20 pilots and staff with country's aviation regulator have succumbed to the pandemic during the latest wave.

Out of these, information on cabin crew and other employees associated with various tasks such as ground handling, front office amongst many diversified areas has still not been accounted for, industry sources told IANS.

On official levels, no records or acknowledgement of the human toll is available.

IANS has not been able to independently verify the number of casualties being claimed by sources.

However, sources across the sector have pointed out that 18 pilots, including five from Air India and rest belonging to private airlines and charter services have succumbed to Covid-19.

Besides airlines, even the staff of Civil Aviation regulator suffered heavily due to the second wave of Covid.

The DGCA last two officers while 154 contracted Covid.

A similar trend has been expected to have played out with the country's airport sector.

However, accelerated vaccination drive by airports and airlines are expected to curb new infections.

Recently, AirAsia India and Vistara completed administering the first jab to all the eligible employees.

Country's largest airline by market share IndiGo which was the first to start the drive has till now vaccinated over 20,000 of its employees.

Recently, Centre allowed for a liberalised vaccination phase under which private entities can procure vaccines at market regulated prices.

These jabs can then be administered under medical supervision to the company's staff.

As of now, India suffers from a massive spike in Covid-19 infections.

Consequently, the massive rise in infection rate has impede the country's medical infrastructure to effectively deal with the crisis.



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