The saga of the Pulwama attack, and the resulting hostility that escalated between the two countries, is not over yet. The air-space ban, that Pakistan had implemented against India on February 26th after the violation of its international boundary and airspace by Indian fighter jets, has been extended till May 30th. India has also banned its airspace to Pakistani air travel for the past two months.

The decision to extend the air space ban was announced by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and came about because of the failure of any breakthrough of bilateral relations between India and Pakistan. According to the Foreign Office Spokesperson, Dr Mohammad Faisal, Pakistan has offered a path for cooperation to India on all issues including terrorism and Jammu Kashmir but India keeps preventing resolution by being aggressive. India’s shut-down of intra-Kashmir trade is one of the many examples of India’s unilateral hostility.

As the situation stands, both India and Pakistan cannot afford the airspace bans, India more so than Pakistan. PIA operations for Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur and New Delhi have been suspended, causing it a loss of millions of rupees per day. According to the Indian daily Economic Times, Air India has suffered a loss of Rs300 crore (Indian rupee) by the end of last month, and Indian fights to central and west Asia take twice as long.

Seeing India’s one-sided aggression for the past few months gives an apt insight into the difficulty that the Pakistan Foreign Office faces in coming into resolution with India. Yet extending air space bans exacerbates the problem and allows this hostility to become the new normal. Once the ban is extended, it will be difficult to overturn the decision unless a major breakthrough occurs with India, which is unlikely. Both sides should resolve this issue before the airspace bans cause further turmoil in both countries’ air travel industries.