Leh/UNI: The last batch of 310 pilgrims, who were stranded in Iran amid lockdown to curtail spread of COVID-19, arrived in Leh in a special flight on Sunday.
Meanwhile, 290 pilgrims, who had returned from Tehran to New Delhi in a flight earlier, will also reach Kargil this afternoon in two special Air India flights.
Divisional Commissioner and Secretary of the Union Territory of Ladakh Saugat Biswas said that the last batch of Ladakhi returnees landed at Leh in a special flight on Sunday. 'As many as 310 people, including one child and 3 infants, were onboard the flight,' he said.
He said all the returnees have been sent to their respective districts, where they will be kept in Institutional quarantine.
Chairman and Chief Executive Councilor, LAHDC, Kargil Feroz Ahmad Khan said that the last batch of 310 Ladakhi pilgrims stranded in the last two months has landed in Leh on Sunday morning. 'Two special aircraft of Air India with 290 UT residents are expected to reach Kargil this afternoon,' he said, adding they were earlier flown to New Delhi from Tehran in a special flight of the Mahan Airways.
'The returnees will go into Institutional quarantine at the facilities set up by the administration in various hotels and resorts in the district. Due medicare and other facilities will be given to the pilgrims during quarantine besides their COVID-19 tests would also be conducted as a precautionary measure,' he said.
He said the booking of tickets of all the 310 pilgrims was done in advance by for which funds were arranged on loan from the District Red Cross Funds Kargil.
The CEO said that more than 85 per cent stranded people have already reached the Union Territory and evacuation from Jammu has been almost completed with 233 buses and 686 light vehicles, carrying 8000 residents and students, who have already arrived in the district.
Khan said that around 3000 passengers have been brought home from Srinagar in 107 buses while permission for private vehicles is under process.
The centre had on March 25 suspended international flights to curtail the spread of COVID-19 in the country.