A day after Pakistan refused to let Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s special flight use its airspace, New Delhi on Monday took the matter to the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).
According to a report published in , Hindustan Times, overflight clearances are sought and granted by other countries as prescribed by the ICAO guidelines.
“Overflight clearances are sought and granted by other countries as per the prescribed guidelines of the ICAO. India will continue to seek such overflight clearances. We have taken up the matter of such denial with the [international] civil aviation body,” said the report.
The development comes hours after local media quoted Foreign Minister to report that Islamabad has turned down New Delhi’s request for the use of its airspace for Modi’s visit to Saudi Arabia.
A day earlier, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi had announced that Islamabad has denied New Delhi’s request for use of airspace for Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Qureshi had said that the decision has been taken in the “context of today’s [Sunday’s] Black Day and in view of the continued gross human rights violations in occupied Jammu and Kashmir,” adding that Indian High Commissioner Ajay Bisaria was being informed of Islamabad’s decision in a written form.
“We regret the decision of the Government of Pakistan to yet again deny the overflight clearance for VVIP special flight, which is otherwise granted routinely by any normal country,” Indian aviation sources said in their response.
India had sought Pakistan’s permission to use the country’s airspace on Oct 28 for Prime Minister Modi, who will be visiting Saudi Arabia to participate in an international business conference on Oct 29.
It is the third time in recent weeks that Islamabad has refused to allow Indian leaders to use its airspace. Prior to this, Pakistan had also denied Modi access to its air space for his visit to the United States to attend the 74th UN General Assembly session on Sept 20. Indian President Ram Nath Kovind had also been denied permission to use the country’s airspace for his official trip to Europe.