Biman passengers’ plight may continue
Biman passengers may continue to suffer for three more days because of the flight rescheduling for shortage of aircraft and ensuring uninterrupted Hajj flights.
‘Biman may witness overflow of passengers from Sunday to Tuesday,’ Biman’s director (marketing and sales) Mohammad Shah Newaz told on Saturday.
Biman has rescheduled all its international flights and suspended domestic flights to cope with the sudden shortage of aircraft and to ensure uninterrupted Hajj flights.
But Biman failed to maintain the Hajj flight schedule. Intending pilgrims, who were scheduled to fly on BG 3023 flight on Saturday about 9:30am will now fly about 11:00am today, Biman officials said.
Apart from Hajj flights, Biman said that all the three flights took off on schedule on Saturday.
Airport sources said that the BG 027 flight was scheduled to fly for Abu Dhabi with 402 passengers on board about 5:45pm on Saturday but it took off with only 162 passengers.
The BG 047 flight, which was originally scheduled to fly 5:30pm for Dubai with 177 passengers on board took off with 162 passengers. The remaining passengers will fly later.
The BG 043 flight, which was scheduled to fly about 8:00m for Kuwait with 445 passengers on board, took off with 221 passengers.
Biman officials were struggling to reschedule flights and facing difficulties to accommodate stranded passengers.
The passengers who could not get on the planes were either stranded at the airport or staying somewhere in the capital at their own expenses.
Two hundred and fifty passengers, however, checked in hotels at Biman’s expenses till Saturday night, told the officials.
Several hundred passengers, mostly workers booked for the Middle Eastern countries and Malaysia, have been stranded at the airport for few days and were uncertain about their flights.
Some migrant workers after failing to join their work on time feared that they may lose their jobs.
Migrant workers who failed to join work abroad urged the government to request authorities of the countries they work in no to harass them on their reaching the places.
Biman director Shah Newaz said that they had already taken a Boeing 767 with the capacity to accommodate 276 on ‘wet lease’ for three months. The aircraft will be put in service on September 26.
Biman’s DC-10, which is now being repaired, will be put in service on September 24 and an Airbus, now under maintenance in Singapore, will join the fleet on September 30.
Jahangir of Munshiganj, who was scheduled to leave Dhaka on Friday evening for Kuwait, said that his flight was rescheduled for Saturday evening.
On Saturday evening, he could get the boarding pass by giving Tk 2,000 in bribe to brokers at the Biman counter inside the airport lounge, told his relative Shahin Alam.
Biman was running its flights on 20 international routes from Dhaka, Chittagong and Sylhet but suspended flights on several international routes because of the crisis.