NEW DELHI, Jan 14 (IANS): DoNER Minister Jitendra Singh on Saturday lauded the Indigo airlines' decision to fly "mortal remains" of people from the Northeast free of cost to their native places as part of "Aakhri Aahuti" initiative.
The Union Minister said that "a request to this effect had been made to all the airlines operating in the region and I am glad that Indigo has been prompt to respond".
Indigo Vice President Vikram Chona handed over a letter from airlines' President Aditya Ghosh, announcing that mortal remains will be carried to such airports in the northeast where Indigo has its operations.
From Delhi, Indigo is currently operating to Guwahati, Agartala, Dibrugarh, Dimapur and Imphal.
Chona also told Singh that, as and when Indigo starts operations to other destinations in the northeast, the same facility shall be provided on these routes too.
He also informed that the first such facility was provided to a native of Manipur who died here and his mortal remains were subsequently flown to Imphal.
Complementing Indigo on behalf of the Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER) Ministry, Singh said that people from the region residing in Delhi often faced a very unfortunate situation whenever there was a death in the family.
"Due to financial constraints, the relatives of the deceased were often unable to take the dead body to their native place in the northeast. As a result, very often, the last rites of several such deceased persons had to be carried out in Delhi itself by compulsion, even though, the relatives and the family wished otherwise," he said.
He further said that the gesture shown by Indigo, is not only a reflection of human concern, but is also an extension of the Public Private Partnership model with the government and private sectors.