The Delhi High Court Thursday sought response of the Centre and DGCA on a plea seeking to do away with the mandatory online self-declaration form, provided under the Air Suvidha App, which has to be filled up by the passengers before boarding a flight that they are COVID-19 negative. A bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Jyoti Singh issued notice to the Ministry of Aviation, Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), and Air India Ltd on the petition which said the self-declaration form requires knowledge of technology and a smartphone along with the seat number which is not there with many passengers.
The court listed the matter for further hearing on December 23. The petition by Sumita Kapil, a practicing advocate, sought direction from the authorities to do away with/scrap with the self-declaration form provided under the Air Suvidha App.
The petition, filed through advocate Shaan Mohan, gave instances of various passengers who were not able to board the flight from abroad to India as they were unable to fill their forms on smartphones and submit them online before boarding the plane despite having tickets and negative RTPCR test reports.
Thereafter, the passengers had to get their forms filled by the travel agent and book another flight due to which they suffered a huge loss, it said. “The self-declaration form has to be given declaring that the passenger is corona negative which is evident in the RTPCR test report which has to be produced before checking in at the airports and that report also has the passport number on it then why a form carrying pictures of passport and COVID test report have to be produced at the counter and submitted online when the physical copies can very well be tracked and posted to the concerned authorities,” the plea said.