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In last year’s Budget speech, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley quipped about the fact that more than 20 million people flew to international destinations from India but only 7.6 million declared an annual income of more Rs 500,000 in 2015-16. An analysis of flying patterns of people shows that Mr Jaitley might have reasons to rejoice not just because there were more than double the number of people in this income bracket who filed tax returns in AY 2017-18 but there has been a steady rise in the number of Indians flying across the world in recent years.
Business Standard analysed the flying trends of Indians to certain cities from 2015 to 2018. For the sake of brevity, only cities that saw more than 10,000 arrivals annually from India were considered. The story of flying patterns is a changing one, dictated by economic, social and personal reasons. The story told through the following five interactive and static maps throws up some interesting trends.
The overall picture: Who flew from where to where
In 2017, almost 30 million people flew from various Indian cities to destinations across the world. This was two million more than the previous year. On expected lines, Dubai continued to be the top destination for Indians. While many go there in search of work, many others go for leisure and business. Almost 6 million people flew to Dubai from various Indian cities – five times more than London.