Community organisations are chartering flights or arranging seats for Qatar residents stranded in the southern Indian state of Kerala to return to Doha.

One flight was chartered by the Kerala Muslim Cultural Centre (KMCC) from Kannur International Airport and seats arranged in a flight from Calicut International Airport.

The flight from Kozhikode arrived in Doha on August 19 with 80 passengers on board. Chartered by KMCC Koothuparamba Constituency Committee, the second Indigo carrier with 110 passengers landed on Wednesday.

"If during the initial weeks of Covid-19 pandemic, many expatriates wanted to go home, now most of them wish to return to Qatar as the situation is better here,” said KMCC Koothuparamba constituency general secretary Kakkatt Azeez.

According to Basheer Khan, KMCC Kozhikode district committee president, the seats were arranged following requests by Qatar residents who wanted to resume their jobs.

“Some of them got stuck back at home after they went for vacation while others, who left Qatar due to the Covid-19 crisis, also wanted to come back,” he said.

KMCC set up special Covid-19 test camps to screen and certify passengers ahead of travelling. The passengers who returned are now quarantined at various hotels in Doha.

"More flights can be chartered to Doha if there is a demand," KMCC Kerala state committee secretary Rayees Ali said.

KMCC, according to Rayees, had chartered 37 flights from Doha to Kozhikode, Kannur, Kochi and Thiruvananthapuram airports over the past several weeks.

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