Presidents and office bearers of various Karnataka State Associations in Kuwait yesterday met visiting congress leader Mr. Ivan D’Souza, Secretary of Karnataka State Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) and discussed the issue of deliberate or planned cancellation of Air India Express flights to Kuwait-Mangalore sector throwing away the travel plans of thousands of NRIs from Coastal Karnataka and Northern parts of Kerala in Kuwait.
The meeting was arranged by United Associations of Karnataka (UAKK) convened by well known Social activist Mr. Elias Sanctis. The meeting was held yesterday in Salmiya Play School in Rumaithiya, Kuwait.
Mr. Elias Sanctis briefed about the difficulties faced by the Coastal Karnataka community with the cancellation of flight services to the said route by Air IIndia Express Management.
Mr. Hasan Yusuf, Chief Coordinator of United associations of Karnataka (UAKK) gave details of the UAKK efforts and follow ups with various concerned authorities.
Rev . Fr. Francis D’Almeida SJ, Vice Principal of St. Aloysius College, Mangalore was also present during the meeting, he expressed the concerns on issues faced by the community during their travel due to the discontinuation of flights in this route. He also said that all the Associations and general public affected must come together and address the issue to our Government in Karnataka and to all the elected representatives from the region.
Mr. Ivan D’souza President of Rachana- Catholic chamber of commerce & Industry Mangalore and a Lawyer in profession is also dissatisfied with the decision made by Indian Carrier. He shared his experience of his journey on his way to Kuwait via Mumbai which was a 6 hour ordeal at Mumbai airport alone!. He insisted to take the matter with higher authorities and the Government and all the elected leaders regardless of political parties so that the Coastal Karnataka NRIs living in Kuwait get their cancelled sector reinstated.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Ivan D’Souza said that retaining the direct flight services to Kuwait-Mangalore sector is a social obligation of Indian Government as more than 130,000 Coastal NRIs work here. He assured to the leaders of UAKK member associations that he would help to intensify the Campaign and take up the issue with Central Govt. and the concerned Aviation Ministry authorities.
He said that Mangalore is an International airport and is having all the facilities to receive international flights 24 hours either from National Carriers or other interested International airline companies. Looking at the aggravated situation of travelling to this sector, he said that Aviation Ministry can grant the landing permission to private airlines such as JET AIRWAYS, Etihad airlines or any other interested airline companies.
Intensify the Follow Up with Ministry of CIVIL AVIATION
UAKK has decided to intensify the struggle until we get direct flight sevices to Kuwait-Mangalore sector. Various aspects of way forward actions were discussed by the heads of Associations and the following Task Force Committee has been formed to follow up on the issue with the Aviation Ministry of India.
• Mr. Ivan D’Souza – Secretary, Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee
• Mr. Elyas Sanctis – Prominent NRI & Well known Social Activist
• Fr Francis D’Almeida SJ – Vice Principal, St. Aloysius College, Mangalore
• Mr. Hasan Yusuf – Chief Coordinator, UAKK
• Mr. Satishchandra Shetty – Prominent NRI & Entrepreneur
• Mr. Pascal Pinto – Prominent NRI and well known Social activist
• Mr. Lawrence Pinto – Prominent NRI and well known social activist
• Mr. Archie Menezes – Well known Social activist
The task force committee has decided to form a core delegation in Mangalore in the near future comprising of Central Ministers & MPs, State Ministers & MLAs from Coastal Karnataka including other VIPs and personally go to Delhi and pressurize the concerned Aviation Ministry authorities until they retain the flight services to KUWAIT – MANGALORE sector immediately.