Over 181 Indian expatriates flew home on a free-chartered flight from Bahrain yesterday. Pravasi Yathra (expatriates travel) Mission group launched this initiative to help expatriates return to Calicut after being affected by the prevailing situation.

Owing to the distress caused by Covid-19, expatriates who returned home yesterday included domestic workers, people who lost their jobs, income, accommodation and some who were struggling to make ends meet.

Speaking to Albilad, “Most of the passengers that flew home on this flight may not return to Bahrain as they don’t have a job and a valid visa. This is the first time a chartered flight from Bahrain for Indian expatriates has been launched by a group of social workers. The mission was possible with the full support of the community. Thanks to the collaborative efforts and support of many individuals and organizations in Bahrain, Mission ‘Dream Flight’ was made possible” said Coordinator Siraj Pallikkara.

“We had a screening process in place where the most genuine individuals were provided with free tickets offered by individuals and various community organisations. A team of over 500 people had been working tirelessly for the first flight and we are planning to schedule a second free chartered flight at the earliest as there are still many hoping to return home” he added.

Experts in Bahrain had earlier highlighted that along with financial distress, people are affected psychologically owing to various factors. Although many have returned home, a percentage of unemployed expats with valid visa’s remain in Bahrain in search of new jobs. The group reiterated their gratitude to the Bahrain government and the ruling family for the efforts extended towards the expatriate community.

Coordinators Siraj Pallikkara and Process Approval Coordinator Sudheer Thirunilath extended their thanks to the Bahrain authorities, embassy officials, airline officials and the community for extending their support.