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Oman flights resume

After four days a number of people returns home as the flight cancelled following a cyclone that hit the sultanate killing 61 people.

india Updated: Jun 09, 2007 20:39 IST

A number of people returned home to Kerala, as air services to and from Oman resumed on Saturday, four days after they were cancelled following a cyclone that hit the sultanate killing 61 people including an Indian in the Gulf region.

A flight to Kochi carried 152 passengers and another landing here had 156 people, said MA Altaf, chief of Oman Air operations here.

"The operations have resumed and from now on things would be fine," Altaf told IANS.

A Gulf Air flight from Muscat with around 170 passengers was expected to land here around 8.30 pm.

Moreover, an Air India Express flight from to Oman was scheduled later in the evening, said HA Munaf, Air India chief of operations.

Around 1,500 passengers fly daily from Kerala to Oman.

Cyclone Gonu slammed into Oman on Wednesday, resulting in the death of at least 25 people.

Cyclone Gonu, which hit Oman on Wednesday before moving towards Iran, killed at least 49 people and left 27 missing in the sultanate, according to Oman's official news agency ONA.

Oman Air cancelled its flights from Tuesday after the cyclone alert was sounded, as did other international carriers.

A large number of Indians, especially from Kerala, who work in Oman were relieved with the resumption of the air service.

"It will take at least a week before Oman returns to normalcy. Water, electricity and telephone lines are not fully operational yet," said a passenger who arrived from Oman.

"Drinking water is still a problem because the water treatment plants there are not fully operational," said another passenger.

Those who arrived said that more Keralites were getting ready to fly back home in the coming days because of the poor conditions there.

"Moreover, it is now almost the vacation time there for educational institutions. So, depending on the availability of air tickets, there could be a good number of Keralites coming for vacation," said a passenger.