India began on Monday allowing fully vaccinated foreign tourists to enter the country on regular commercial flights, in the latest easing of coronavirus restrictions.
India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi rode to power five years ago on his business-friendly credentials and the promise of generating millions of jobs. Now an airline is on the verge of collapse, bringing Modi's image under attack just months before national elections. While he is not to blame for the unraveling of Jet Airways — the airline was brought to its knees because of high fuel prices and intense competition — Modi's policies to make air travel affordable to more and more Indians didn't help it either. The fate of the teetering carrier is now part of the opposition's narrative that businesses are ailing.
For the first time in months, Izhaar Hussain Shaikh is feeling somewhat optimistic. The 30-year-old ambulance driver in India’s metropolis of Mumbai has been working tirelessly ever since the city became the epicenter of another catastrophic COVID-19 surge slashing through the country. Last month, he drove about 70 patients to the hospital but, two weeks into May, he’s only carried 10 patients.