With 337 more persons reaching India on Friday, Air India has brought more than 1,600 Indians back from the quake-hit Japan. It has also transported over 25 tonnes of relief material, including 20,000 blankets, to that country.

“A total of 337 people arrived from Tokyo in Air India's flight AI 307 today [Friday]. Since March 12, the airline has brought back 1,637 passengers, mostly Indians, from Japan,” an Air India official said. On Thursday, the airline carried 385 passengers from Tokyo's Narita Airport.

Air India has deployed Boeing 747-400 aircraft on the Delhi-Tokyo route, instead of the regular Boeing 777-300, to accommodate more Indians wanting to return home from Japan.

“We have also extended the deployment of Boeing 747 till March 21, instead of March 19 as decided earlier,” the official said.

With more Indians wanting to leave Japan, which now struggles to avert a meltdown at some of its nuclear , Air India has deployed the 423-seater Boeing 747 to bring more people, from March 16. Air India will also waive charges for re-booking, cancellation and refund on all types of tickets for travel from and to Japan till March 31.

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