TIA to remain closed for flights till 10 am today, stranded foreigners will get free visa

KATHMANDU, March 7: Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) will remain closed for international flights till 10 am on Saturday.

Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN), informed that the TIA will remain closed till Saturday morning as efforts to move the Turkish Airlines aircraft from the runway is still under way.

The recovery team, including technicians and experts from Nepal and India, is trying to tow the aircraft to the runway and move it to the remote parking area said Ratish Chandra Lal Suman, director general of Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal.

TIA will be providing round the clock service once the international flights resumes. Currently TIA remains closed from 12:30 am to 6:30 am.

Most of the airlines have requested to operate wide body aircraft so that the stranded passengers do not have to wait longer once the service resumes suman.

The closure of airport has affected around 40,000 passengers. Around 80 flights take-off and land at the TIA every day.

Meanwhile, Jet Airways aircraft which was stranded since Tuesday evening since Wednesday returned without passengers. According to airport officials, the empty aircraft requires only 3,000 feet runway and as 5,000 feet is available, it has been sent back.

The Department of Immigration will issue free visa to tourists whose visa has expired after Wednesday. Normally, tourists have to pay $30 to extend their visa for 15 days.

Suman said tourists have been forced to overstay due to closure of the international airport. “Hence, the government has decided to issue free visa to foreigners until the TIA opens for international flights.

Many airlines have not provided accommodation and fooding to passengers and this has made things difficult, especially for migrant workers.