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IANS

Airline major Air India's will operate more flights to Romania and Hungary to bring back stranded Indians, heading to these countries from war-torn Ukraine.

The airline operated a direct flight from New Delhi to Bucharest on early Sunday morning, while another one departed for the Romanian capital the afternoon.

Besides, the airline will operate one flight from New Delhi to Budapest in the evening.

These flights are operated as special government charters to bring back stranded Indians, who managed to find their way out of the hostilities between Russia and Ukraine.

On early Sunday morning, an Air India flight successfully brought back 250 Indian students from Bucharest.

On Saturday, AI's Bucharest to Mumbai flight with 219 passengers landed back at 7.50 p.m.

As Romania and Hungary share land borders with Ukraine, many Indian nationals, including students have made their way.

Air India operated two flights, one each from Delhi and Mumbai to Bucharest and Budapest as special government charter flights.

These flights have been mounted on Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft which have capacity of 254 passengers per plane.

"Air India has always been playing a pivotal role, standing by the nation during any crisis and now, inspired by the common mission shared by the Tata group and AI of serving the nation and its people first," the airline had said.

"Our employees are only too eager to respond to the call of our nation, driven by our values and conviction that if we do not do it then who will?"

Earlier Air India was operating direct special flights to Kiev but it had to stop these operations due to a NOTAM (Notice to Airmen) issued over the closure of Ukrainian air space.

In fact, one of Air India's flight bound for Kiev from New Delhi returned to the national capital's IGI Airport after NOTAM was announced at Kiev airport on Thursday.

On Tuesday, the airline had carried out the first of its special flight operations ferrying Indian citizens from Ukraine.

Apart from Air India, other Indian operators were expected to start special flight services to Ukraine.

Last week, the Centre removed the restrictions on the number of flights and seats between India and Ukraine, evidently to facilitate the return of Indian students and professionals stranded in the east European nation due to the ongoing tensions with Russia.

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