Private carrier Air Sahara on Thursday announced it would fly its first chartered, non-revenue flight to Colombo on Friday, saying it would launch direct services from Mumbai and Chennai and link other metros after necessary government permission is granted to it.
"We are happy and proud to announce our first inaugural flight to Colombo ... it will be a non-revenue charter flight, meaning we will not earn anything. We will operate a 168-seater Boeing 737-800 tomorrow," Air Sahara CEO Uttam Kumar Bose told reporters in New Delhi.
Asked by when he hoped to start regular services to Colombo, he said, "Once the prime minister has made an announcement, it should not take much time. We are getting ready and things are moving fast. May be in the next few weeks."
Taking pride at being the first private carrier to operate from the international airport in New Delhi and land on a foreign soil, Bose said the airline hoped that the government would soon open up other international sectors as well. "We expect destinations in Saarc and Asean nations also to be opened up for us."
Besides direct flights from Mumbai and Chennai, Air Sahara plans to offer one flight from Delhi to Colombo via Bangalore. It also planned to have daily connections to Hyderabad and Goa and later link Colombo with the Buddhist circuit touching Bodhgaya (Patna), Sarnath (Varanasi) and Kushinagar (Gorakhpur).