Shillong, Jul 7 UNI | 16 days ago

The Meghalaya government has sought a status report from the Alliance Air for stopping its flight service between Shillong-Kolkata, Transport Minister H D R Lyngdoh said.

Alliance Air, a subsidiary of Air India, discontinued its air service for Kolkata-Shillong-Kolkata route since June 1, last due to irregular payment of viability gap funding (VGF) by the North Eastern Council (NEC). 'We have already sought a status report from the Alliance Air for discontinuing its service in the State,' Mr Lyngdoh said.

He said the reasons for Alliance Air discontinuing its service in Meghalaya would be known only after receiving the status report.

Meanwhile, Mr Lyngdoh informed that the state government has received offers from some private airline operators to operate between Shillong-Kolkata and vice-versa.

'We are examining those proposals and the government will take its decision accordingly after consultation with the Civil Aviation ministry,' the Transport Minister said. The NEC had requested the Air India subsidiary to continue the Shillong-Calcutta-Shillong flight service from the Umroi airport until October, and assured that the necessary VGF would be provided.

NEC adviser (transport and communication) P K H Singh also informed that from July onwards, Seven Sisters Alliance would be providing air connectivity to Umroi airport from Kolkata, and the airports at Tezpur, Lilabari and Dimapur from Guwahati.

'Seven Sister's Alliance was chosen following the process of open bidding,' Mr Singh said.

In June last year, the Union Civil Aviation ministry had directed Air India to resume the flight to Shillong after it was suspended from January, 2013.

Alliance Air, the subsidiary of cash-strapped national carrier Air India, has repeatedly claimed VGF subsidy from the NEC worth Rs 52 crore and Rs 55 crore for 2012 and 2013, respectively.

(Posted on 07-07-2014)