Some pets stranded by the coronavirus may soon be reunited with their families.
When the pandemic hit and forced lockdown orders across the world, many people found themselves unable to travel as they normally would. Some people found themselves stranded, while others were forced to return to their hometowns.
Deepika Singh, a Mumbai-based cybersecurity researcher, is working with Rahul Muchhal of Accretion Aviation to organize a private flight to return stranded pets to their families.
Deepika Singh, a Mumbai-based cybersecurity researcher, is organizing a private jet to return animals to their families, Times Now News reports. She reportedly already has four animals booked for the flight and needs to find two more passengers to make the logistics work.
Singh says she was inspired for the idea after helping her aunt (who lives alone in Delhi) fly to Mumbai to be with family during the pandemic.
“A few of my friends recently took a jet to Goa and that made me think if the same could be done for vulnerable groups like senior citizens, for who taking commercial flights might be risky, and pets who otherwise are transported through cargo shipments, could have a safer ride home,” Singh told the Mumbai Mirror.
She continued, “When I initially began to spread the word through my WhatsApp network, I received a lot of inquiries but some passengers refused to travel along with pets even if they were caged. I then got in touch with Rahul Muchhal of Accretion Aviation and we worked out an all-pet private jet that could transport canines and also birds and other pets that have gotten left behind in this lockdown.”
While only a single flight is currently in the works, Singh and the airline are researching the demand for these pet-only flights to see if they can become a regular service. One of the issues, however, is the type of plane they might use has an open cockpit. This apparently makes pilots nervous to fly with animals on-board.
According to the Mumbai Mirror, Singh is reaching out to several people in Delhi so she can hire someone to travel with the pets and serve as an in-flight attendant for them.
So far, the flight has one Golden Retriever, two Shih Tzus and one Lady Pheasant bird booked. Singh says she needs two more passengers booked to make the flight viable.