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Travel plan of Mayuresh Dharmadhikari, a Mumbai resident who is currently pursuing his MSc in the United Kingdom and wanted to return home following a surgery, went awry due to suspension of flights from the European country till December 31.

India has suspended all passenger flights connecting to the UK from Wednesday (December 22 midnight) till December 31 in the wake of the emergence of a mutated variant of the coronavirus in Britain, joining several other countries that have imposed a similar flight ban.

The 25-year-old student had booked his ticket to travel to Mumbai on December 25, but now he will have to wait longer to return home.

Dharmadhikari, who went to Britain last year, is pursuing his MSc in finance and investment banking at the University of Hertfordshire.

"I have my Air India ticket booked from London to Mumbai on December 25. I woke up in the morning (local time) with news that all flights have been cancelled and there is no option to fly to India.

"It was very urgent for me to fly to Mumbai as I underwent a surgery last week and due to the COVID-19 situation here, there was no response from the National Health Service (NHS)," he told PTI througha text message on Monday.

Dharmadhikari said he tried to contact the Indian High Commission and the airline staff, but did not succeed.

"I am looking forward to reschedule my travel plans if the suspension of the flight operations is not extended post-December 31," he added.

For the last few months, Vistara, Air India, British Airways and Virgin Atlantic have been operating a limited number of direct special flights between India and the UK under the bilateral air bubble arrangement between the two nations.

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