By: Laura Steiner
A Milton family is stranded in New Delhi, India. Shraddha Mittal, her husband, and two children arrived in India March 11, and were scheduled to return home April 1st, 2020.
Conditions in India began to deteriorate shortly after they arrived. They contacted their travel agent and tried booking a flight March 26, which was cancelled. A second attempt was made to fly out April 7, and that flight was also cancelled.
Mittal contacted Consular Services in Ottawa who advised her to register with the Registry of Canadians abroad (ROCA) using the permanent resident cards. March 31, the family was informed that the flights would no longer be including Permanent Residents unless they were accompanying Canadian Citizens.
Repatriation flights from India have been scheduled to leave from New Delhi April 4-7. Canadians are eligible to apply for $2900 loans for one-way flights via London, United Kingdom. They are then required to book flights from London to a Canadian destination. Upon their return, they are required to self-quarantine for 14 days.
Global Affairs confirmed in an email that permanent residents were permitted to board the outbound flights. “This program is for Canadians, including permanent residents who normally live in Canada and have found themselves stranded abroad because of a lack of local air service local restrictions,” Spokesperson Barbara Harvey said. When pressed on the conflicting information, they declined further comment.
“We want to be back in our home,” Mittal said in an email.