• Thursday, 21 February 2019

Navi Mumbai airport to be operationalised by 2021-22: Minister

New Delhi, Feb 13 : The Central government plans to operationalise Navi Mumbai airport by 2021-22, apart from creating additional infrastructure at existing airports in Delhi and Banagalore, Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha said on Wednesday.

Speaking at the CAPA India Aviation Summit, the Minister said that efforts are on to decongest existing airports in metro cities and that the civil enclave at the Hindon Air Force base is likely to be operationalised next month.

A civil enclave is an area allotted at an airport belonging to the armed forces for providing civilian air transport services.

Earlier, the Ministry of Defence agreed to make the Air Force base available for flight operations under the second round of the Regional Connectivity Scheme -- Udan -- (RCS-Udan).

The Air Force Station is located around 30 km away from downtown New Delhi and is spread over an area of over 55 sq km, making it one of the largest air bases in Asia. It is operated under the Western Air Command.

Besides, the Minister said, new runways are being constructed at Delhi and Bangalore airports.

On the national carrier Air India, he said that the government is trying to financially revive the airline.

Sinha said that the government has strengthened the airline's management and prepared a revival plan for the national passenger carrier.

According to the Minister, a SPV (special purpose vehicle) has been created which will take care of Rs 29,000 crore worth of debt. Air India Group has a total Rs 55,000-crore loan burden.

The revival plan comes after government's efforts to offload a majority stake in the airline failed in May 2018.



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