Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Collector keeps Khed airport option open

The option of Khed, located north of Pune district, is still an option for the proposed international airport, the district administration said on Tuesday.

"I have received a letter from Khed MLA Suresh Gore. He told me that 1,800 acres were free and the landowners did not have any problems giving the land for the airport. The administration is trying its best to talk to the farmers of Purandar. The state government has announced that the airport will come up in Purandar and the administration is doing all it can to make the villagers understand. If at all it does not materialize in Purandar, the Khed option is open. We have communicated this development to the state government too. Airports Authority of India had studied four sites in Khed and rejected three of them. One was under consideration, but at that point of time it did not roll out," district collector Saurabh Rao said.

When contacted, Khed's Shiv Sena MLA Suresh Gore said the villagers were willing. "I had a detailed talk with the collector three days ago. Last month, we communicated our willingness to chief minister Devendra Fadnavis. The land acquired for Khed special economic zone is located east of Khed and includes five villages. The SEZ authorities don't have any issues and neither do the farmers. If more land is required, the villagers are ready to provide it for the airport. All of us will be happy if the project comes to Khed as the area will see more development," Gore told TOI.

Protests in seven villages have marked the Purandar site ever since it was announced as the site for the airport.
19/10/16 The Times Of India