Saturday, October 22, 2016

City's aviation dreams took wings 80 years ago

Vadodara: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will inaugurate the new Vadodara International Airport, Gujarat's first green airport, on Saturday afternoon. But the foundation of Vadodara's aviation dreams was laid way back in 1930s.
If Vadodara's visionary ruler Maharaja Sayajirao III would have had his way, the city would have by now emerged as an aviation hub.
Sayajirao, a flying enthusiast, had signed a pact with a Germany's glider manufacturing company Decota that had established a manufacturing unit in Vadodara. In 1936, Sayajirao III had visited the Berlin Olympics where he signed a Baroda-Berlin pact to take help from scientists and engineers from Germany.
"After Sayajirao's death, his grandson Maharaja Pratapsinhrao Gaekwad who was coronated to the throne in 1939 continued the pact. And a factory to manufacture gliders was set up in Vadodara," said art conservator Chandrashekhar Patil.
22/10/16 Prashant Rupera/Times of India