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    20 flights cancelled, over 100 delayed at IGI airport

    New Delhi (PTI): Fliers continued to have a gruelling time at the IGI airporton Sunday as around 20 flights were cancelled while nearly 100 both from domestic and international airlines were delayed by up to three hours due to fog and clearance of backlog of earlier schedules.

    Despite not so dense fog condition at the Indira Gandhi International (IGI) airport, about 13 flights were rescheduled and 10 ( eight domestic and two international) were diverted to Mumbai, Ahmedabad and Jaipur to clear a huge backlog from Saturday.

    Poor visibility due to bad weather conditions which prevailed at airports in Amritsar, Leh, Kullu, Patna, Lucknow and other areas also contributed to delay, cancellation or merger of many flights from here.

    Several airlines combined their early morning flights due to low passenger load and in anticipation of fog, which has been affecting the smooth flight operations since Monday.

    "We have combined three morning flights due to low passenger load and also to ensure availability of aircraft at the other airports for smooth operations," a spokesperson of an airline said.

    Over 600 flights were delayed and about 100 cancelled this week due to dense fog which enveloped the national capital almost every alternate day.

    Fliers to Leh, in Ladakh, were a harassed lot as their flight was continuously cancelled for the third day today due to inclement weather at Leh.

    "I had my ticket of January 2 for Kingfisher flight to Leh, but the airlines has cancelled the flight for the third consecutive day today," said Ashok Kumar, a Dam Construction worker who wanted to reach Leh soon.

    Kumar complained that due to the continuous cancellation, he has not been able to pay for the taxi fares and the hotel bills.

    The delays, cancellations and merger of flights also caused inconvenience to the passengers, who complained that they did not receive any prior information regarding delays or cancellation of scheduled departures.

    Flight schedule went haywire after dense fog descended at the IGI airport yesterday causing delay of about 150 flights and cancellation of 21 others. The visibility, though, improved later in the afternoon, started to deteriorate from 8 pm last night, forcing airport authorities to implement low visibility procedure (LVP) as the runway visibility range (RVR) dipped to 500 metres for the new runway.

    The LVP was terminated after 16 hours and three minutes at 12.08 pmon Sunday afternoon, when RVR improved to 1400 metres.

    A total of 275 flights, (179 domestic and 96 internationals) operated during the LVP, of which 201 operated under CAT I, 53 under CAT II, and 21 under CAT III A condition, airport officials said, adding that no flight operated under CAT-III B conditions.

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