His Majesty The King awarded the Druk Thuksey to Drukair Corporation Limited at the 114th National Day at the Tashichodzong on 17 December.
The Druk Thuksey was conferred to Drukair in recognition of its exceptional service to the Nation for over 40 years, and especially during the COVID-19 pandemic by operating numerous repatriation flights and transporting essential medical supplies and vaccines.
Drukair was instituted upon Royal Proclamation in 1981. In its historic first flight in 1983, it took 17 passengers to Kolkata on a Dornier aircraft. Since then, Drukair has operated over 100,000 flights to 10 cities in 5 countries as well as 3 domestic airports.
A statement from the Druk Gyalpo’s Office stated Drukair’s role has been integral to Bhutan’s response to the pandemic.
“Since March 2020, it has operated over 360 flights, including numerous repatriation flights to bring back Bhutanese wishing to return home from all over the world. Many of these flights were operated to cities beyond Drukair’s routes. Drukair also continued to transport patients to India during the pandemic for medical treatments despite severe risks and operational restrictions. It operated 63 cargo flights bringing in medical supplies including COVID-19 vaccines, which were used for the nation-wide vaccination campaign,” it said.
In addition, frontline staffs of Drukair have spent a total of around 1000 days in quarantine during the pandemic
Upon receiving the honour the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Drukair, Tandin Wangchuck said, “We are humbled to receive the honour for our thirty eight years of services and we are proud to have recognized as we are motivated to work even harder with the utmost dedication.”
The CEO further added that they will work hard to meet the expectations of His Majesty The King and the people.
Meanwhile, Drukair has played a vital role during the pandemic where they brought back all the Bhutanese strained people in other countries and played a big role in the transportation of the medical equipments.