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Vistara grounds both weekly flights to Sri Lanka amid nationwide curfew and violence

Vistara grounds both weekly flights to Sri Lanka amid nationwide curfew and violence

By CNBC-TV18 May 9, 2022 6:08:31 PM IST (Updated)

After Colombo imposed a nationwide curfew and Army troops were deployed in the capital, full-service carrier Vistara on Monday suspended all flights to Sri Lanka until further notice with effect from May 6.

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Tata Group-backed Vistara used to operate flights twice weekly to Sri Lanka.
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Earlier today, Sri Lankan Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa resigned hours after his supporters attacked anti-government protesters outside embattled President Gotabaya Rajapaksa's office, leaving at least 78 people injured. At least two Cabinet ministers have also announced their resignations.
Prime Minister Mahinda, 76, sent his resignation letter to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa after violent scenes were witnessed in Colombo. The violence occurred as pressure mounted on the embattled government led by his younger brother and President Gotabaya to form an interim administration to overcome the worst economic crisis facing the country.
Sri Lanka is currently in the throes of unprecedented economic turmoil since its independence from Britain in 1948. The crisis is caused in part by a lack of foreign currency, which has meant that the country cannot afford to pay for imports of staple foods and fuel, leading to acute shortages and very high prices.
Vistara is a joint venture between Tata Group and Singapore Airlines Ltd (SIA), where Tatas own 51 percent and SIA holds 49 percent stake. Tata Sons is a majority stakeholder with 83.67 percent stake in AirAsia India while Air Asia Investment Ltd (Malaysia) holds 16.33 percent stake.
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