A special flight carrying 242 Bangladeshis from the USA to Bangladesh
Staff Reporter: A special flight chartered by Qatar Airways with 242 Bangladeshi nationals stranded in the United States due to coronavirus left Washington Dallas International Airport for Dhaka on Friday night.
Bangladesh Ambassador to the United States Mohammad Ziauddin bade farewell to the passengers at the airport. Other embassy officials were present at the time.
The state-of-the-art A-350-900 Airbus departs Washington at 11:04 pm local time. The plane will land at Doha International Airport on May 17 at 6 pm local time. After a 1-hour technical break, the flight will leave Doha for Dhaka at 8 pm local time. All passengers will be seated inside the aircraft during the break. The plane is scheduled to land at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport in Dhaka at 4 am Bangladesh time on Sunday (May 18).
The passengers include students studying at various colleges and universities in the United States, Bangladeshi citizens on tourist and business visas, and government and private officials. Besides, 49 school-college students from Bangladesh under the US Education and Cultural Program were among the passengers.
Ms. Marie Royce, Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs, spoke by telephone with Ambassador Mohammed Ziauddin on Thursday afternoon. During the discussion, Ms. Royce commended the Government of Bangladesh and the Ambassador for taking the initiative to repatriate students from Bangladesh under the Education and Cultural Program in the United States. Ms Royce hopes the 49 students will reach their respective residences safely soon.
The Bangladesh government took the initiative to repatriate the stranded Bangladeshi nationals. On May 4, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs leased a special plane of Qatar Airlines. Orix Aviation Ltd. provides airfare and ticketing under the direction of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Earlier, on March 30, at the direction of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Bangladesh Embassy in Washington and the Bangla Consulate in New York and Los Angeles requested to send information on their website to Bangladeshis wishing to return home at their own expense.
As per the earlier instructions, each passenger boarded the plane with a medical certificate without Covid-19. After landing in Dhaka, each passenger will fill out a health declaration form and submit it to the Bangladesh immigration officials.