Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Glorious history of civil aviation in Hyderabad stuck in air pocket

Hyderabad: Hyderabad Does Not Have An Aviation Museum. Relics Of Yore Remain Only In Photographs And Books. Now, Heritage Activists Want A Portion Of The Begumpet Airport To Be Converted Into An Aviation Museum To Inspire The Younger Generation
The legacy of civil aviation in Hyderabad continues to inspire pilots and researchers in aviation even seven decades after the first commercial flight took off the Begumpet airport in July 1946.The Begumpet airport, which is now virtually defunct, has been a witness to the history of Hyderabad's civil and military aviation as it unfolded over the years. It was the first airport to watch a new chapter being drafted in the world of aviation when the world's first woman commercial pilot took off from its runway in 1948. However, the aviation history of Hyderabad traces back to a little over 100 years ago, 1911 to be precise.
In fact, Hyderabad's aviation heritage is intricately linked with the nobility and the ordinary citizens, and military and civil aircraft. It also cherishes several interesting episodes including the air phobia of the Nizam VII, Mir Osman Ali Khan, who founded the Begumpet airport, and the mysterious Sydney Cotton, who airdropped arms prior to the Operation Polo or the so-called Police Action in 1948 that led to the merger of Hyderabad state with the Indian Union. The runway and the air traffic control tower in Begumpet airport still echoes the daredevilry of the women aircrew. Sadly, Hyderabad with a glorious history and heritage of civil and military aviation does not boast of an aviation museum.
16/08/17 Syed Akbar/Times of India