The Delhi airport has received requests for the cancellation of close to 160 domestic flights in view of air and road traffic restrictions during the upcoming G20 summit scheduled in September.
"Decision on cancellations of flights have been taken by airlines, possibly in light of traffic restrictions due to the G20 summit. So far, we have received requests for cancellation of approximately 80 departing and 80 arriving domestic flights over three days, which is a mere six per cent of the normal domestic operations at Delhi Airport. The restrictions will not cause any impact on international flights," a Delhi International Airport Ltd (DIAL) spokesperson said.
Earlier reports suggested that the government had directed airlines to reschedule or cancel flights due to a crunch in parking spaces at the airport. In such a case, it would have been a challenge for the airport to cater to the parking demands of commercial flights and the flights of G20 delegates who will fly in and out of the capital from September 8 to 10.
However, the airport has clarified that it is 'fully-equipped' with sufficient parking space.
"Current news on cancellations of flights has no linkage to parking of aircraft. We have already provided the required parking. We'd like to assure all travellers that Delhi Airport is fully equipped with ample parking space for aircraft," the spokesperson added.
However, the Delhi airport, the largest airport in the country, has a short supply of parking spots. It has nearly 220 parking stands, which record high utilisation due to a surge in air traffic. Additionally, 50 aircraft are grounded in Delhi due to GoFirst's engine woes and bankruptcy. This has resulted in a crunch for parking spots at the airport.
The G20 Summit, with India holding the presidency this year, will occur on September 9 and 10. It will include numerous meetings between heads of state, invitees and various officials.
The heads of state of over 30 countries, including US President Joe Biden, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, Chinese Premier Xi Jinping, and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, will participate in the summit.
This year, the theme for the G20 Summit is "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam, which translates to "One Earth, One Family, One Future."
The G20 cohort includes leaders from Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, UK, US and the European Union.