Kingfisher gets OK to fly KTM-DEL-MUM

KATHMANDU, DEC 13 - The Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation has granted permission to Kingfisher Airlines, India's only five-star airline rated by Skytrax, to operate in Nepal.

According to the ministry, the airline is likely to commence its Delhi-Kathmandu-Mumbai daily service from July-end.

"As per the recently concluded air service agreement between Nepal and India, Kingfisher has been given permission to connect Delhi-Kathmandu-Mumbai," said Laxman Prasad Bhattarai, Tourism Ministry spokesperson.

He added that increasing international flight accessibility was expected to give a big boost to the Nepali tourism industry. Nepal Association of Tour and Travel Agents (NATTA) president Ram Kaji Koney said that connectivity with the Indian business hub of Mumbai would help Nepal's tourism to flourish.

The number of tourists from the southern part of India can be expected to swell as they are interested in Nepal's pilgrimage spots, he added.

Jet Airlines and Dubai Air have recently received permission to fly to Kathmandu.

Spice Jet Air is also seeking operational approval to link Nepal. Kingfisher Airlines was launched in May 2005 by India's well-known UB Group.

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