India has requested Pakistan to let Prime Minister NarendraModi's aircraft fly over its airspace to Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan where he has toattend the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit on June 13 and June14, said a senior government official.
"We have requested Pakistan to let the PM's plane flyover its airspace through one of the routes that has not been opened as yet.The PM has to attend the SCO meet on June 13 and June 14," a seniorgovernment official said.
Pakistan had given special permission to India's thenexternal affairs minister Sushma Swaraj to fly directly through Pakistaniairspace to attend the SCO Foreign Ministers' meet in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, onMay 21.
Apart from the two routes through southern Pakistan, theneighbouring country's airspace remains closed for commercial airliners.
The IAF announced on May 31 that all temporary restrictionsimposed on Indian airspace post the Balakot airstrike have been removed.However, it is unlikely to benefit any commercial airliners unless Pakistanreciprocates and opens its complete airspace.
Among Indian airlines, the international operations of AirIndia and IndiGo have been affected by the closure of Pakistani airspace.
IndiGo, India's largest airline by share in domesticpassenger market, has been unable to start direct flights from Delhi toIstanbul due to the closure of Pakistani airspace.
The low-cost carrier started the Delhi-Istanbul flight inMarch this year. It has to take the longer route every time over the ArabianSea and make a stop either at Doha in Qatar or at Ahmedabad in Gujarat forrefuelling.
Similarly, full-service carrier Air India is unable to flynon-stop flights from Delhi to the US since the closure of Pakistani airspace.
Pakistan had fully closed its airspace on February 26 afteran Indian Air Force (IAF) strike in Balakot. Since then, it has only opened tworoutes, both of them pass through southern Pakistan, of the total 11.