Maiden direct flight from Odisha to Dubai lands in Dubai with lots of hopeTue 16 May 2023
Dubai: it was 10 PM at Dubai international airport, and a huge number of Odia people were waiting to receive the first maiden direct flight of Indigo Airlines from Bhubaneswar to Dubai. UAE has a vibrant Odia community of more than 100,000 living and working here. For them, it was a moment of joy and a very much welcoming move from the government of Odisha and the Civil Aviation Ministry of India.
The delegation from Odisha includes government officers, political leaders, members of Mission Shakti, Panchayati Raj, and celebrated sportspersons, who were received by the consul general of India in Dubai, Dr. Aman Puri, and his team. A total of 170 people including the aircraft crew traveled on this flight from Bhubaneswar to Dubai.
Ashok Chandra Panda, Minister of public enterprises, Government of Odisha said that it was a demand of the Odia diaspora from UAE, which has been a reality now. Our CM Naveen Patnaik was keeping this flight on the priority list and it’s operational now.
Dilip Tirkey, president of Hockey India, said that “I visited Dubai so many times in the past, but this is the first time I am flying directly from Odisha to Dubai. As Dubai is a hub of business, tourism, finance, and sports, it is going to help Odisha in many ways”.
10 members of Mission Shakti, who were part of the delegation and traveling for the first time by air, were not able to hide their excitement at Dubai Airport. Mishi Priya Das from the Mission Shakti team expresses her feeling that we were scared and excited as it was our first flight. We are thankful to Naveen Patnaik for this initiative.
Sujeet Kumar Sahu, a resident of Dubai who hails from Odisha was carrying a placard written “Welcome Dubai” in Odia, adding that it is a blessing for us, as it will save our journey time. Earlier we will be supposed to travel 11-15 hours through connecting flights, but now we can reach our destination in 5 hours. It’s a blessing for us in times of emergency.
Sudhashree Dash, a Dubai resident, and active member of Odia social clubs expressed her feelings that It was a demand for the last 20 years and finally, the day has come. Today we are elated. It is like a dream come true for us. Flying to Odisha without changing flights will be a totally new experience. Can’t wait for my next trip to Odisha. A frightening trip in the past with luggage and family members was a frightening experience. We thank our CM for this initiative. Hope more and more Odia will benefit from this new route.
Shree Mohapatra, a Sharjah resident from Odisha, said that It’s an overwhelming feeling to finally know that we can now travel direct, without any hassles of airport transfers, baggage transfers, endless queues for a second security check, and moreover tiring waiting hours.