Safely repatriated an employee and his family to India from the UK during COVID-19 lockdown

I was working as the Lead Consultant for a project based out of the UK which was expected to end in May 2020. While we were there, my wife and I were blessed with a baby daughter and subsequently my parents arrived to celebrate the new arrival in our family.

I had already applied for my daughter’s passport and my parents had booked their tickets back to India. However, once the COVID-19 outbreak spread, the VFS offices cancelled any appointments necessary for my daughter’s passport. In addition, the family’s flight tickets back to India were also cancelled, leaving us stranded. My manager and various cross functional teams at Sasken took active steps to get support from the MEA and the Government of India for our safe return to India. When we heard of the Vande Bharat Mission, we coordinated with the HCI London branch for my daughter’s travel documents. In addition, we applied for an emergency passport in her name and, in mid-June, we managed to get a Phase 3 flight back to Chennai for the entire family.

The HR and Travel desk at Sasken provided timely details of the necessary steps to take during the journey. Once we reached Chennai on June 28, we completed the necessary health checks and, after a weeklong quarantine, were finally back home. We are truly grateful for the support that Sasken provided during this time to ensure our safe return to India.

Manoj Chidambaram
Principal Engineer