The authorities said passengers who comply with visa rules face no delays upon their arrival at DXB.
A week after the UAE authorities reiterated the visa rules that tourists and visitors must comply with, a number of passengers continue to be stranded at Dubai International Airport (DXB).
Since last week, a number of tourists and visitors were not allowed to enter the country because they failed to meet the minimum criteria. Requirements include a return ticket, a hotel booking or a relative’s reference, and sufficient cash. The authorities said passengers who comply with visa rules face no delays upon their arrival at DXB.
Though hundreds of stranded travellers had already been repatriated, a number of passengers are still awaiting updates and a final decision on their status at the airport.
Khaleej Times has reached out to the General Directorate of Residency and Foreign Affairs (GDRFA) for comments on the matter, and a reply is awaited.
Ninety-eight Pakistani passengers who failed to meet visa requirements were stranded at DXB on Tuesday, the Pakistan Consulate in Dubai said.
According to the mission, a total of 1,374 Pakistanis have been denied entry so far and 1,276 of them have been repatriated. The rest are expected to be sent home ‘in the next 12 hours’, the consulate said, adding that while they are waiting for flights, they are provided with food and all the necessary support.
Ahmed Amjad Ali, Consul-General at Pakistan Consulate in Dubai, has met the authorities of Dubai Airports, immigration, dnata Management, as well as the general managers of Pakistani carriers PIA and Airblue, to resolve the issue and facilitate the stranded Pakistanis.
17 Indians flown home
Out of the 66 Indian passengers who had been stuck at DXB on Monday, 17 were flown home, said Neeraj Agarwal, Consul for Press, Information, and Culture at the Consulate General of India in Dubai.
“The remaining are still inside the airport. We expect they will be repatriated in a day or two,” he said on Tuesday.
The consul said they have been facing a challenge in finding seats for repatriation as flights to and from India are operating at 80 to 90 per cent capacity.
“On average, there are at least 4,000 passengers who are travelling to India. We are witnessing similar traffic from UAE to India, as well,” Agarwal said. “This may be happening because air travel between these countries are returning to normal and people are travelling not just for repatriation purposes, but also for short trips.”
A few Bangladeshis
Some Bangladeshis also faced the same issue at the Dubai airport on Tuesday, a source at the diplomatic mission in Abu Dhabi confirmed.
He said: “We have very few numbers. I can confirm there are less than 10 passengers who have arrived here on local carriers.”
The diplomat added that the passengers did not arrive on Bangladesh’s national carrier Biman.
“Biman has made the rules for incoming passengers very stringent. Visit visa-holders are mandated to have confirmed return tickets and residents must have prior approval from ICA and GDRFA before departing from Bangladesh,” he said.
Biman Airlines has also issued a circular to all travel agents, which clearly instructs passengers to have a confirmed return ticket to avoid deportation.
“All passengers, those who are holding a visit visa and waiting for their journey must have a Biman return ticket (one ticket with two coupons) for travelling from Bangladesh to UAE,” the circular stated.
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