Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Congress demands regular flights from Jharsuguda

Sambalpur: Non-operation of air services from the newly opened Veer Surendra Sai Airport at Jharsuguda, 55km from here, has led to an agitation being launched by the Congress on Tuesday.

Hundreds of Congress workers, led by Jharsuguda MLA Naba Das, resorted to two-day dharna in front of the airport, demanding regularisation of the daily flight and functioning of a full-fledged airport.

Das warned the Centre for playing with the sentiment of the people of Odisha by not providing air services, according to their commitments. “It was a pity that the scheme, which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on September 22 with much fanfare by the Centre and the BJP, was not operating,” he said.

Das warned that the party would initiate a series of agitations from November if the airport did not start properly functioning by then.

The Air Odisha entrusted to operate the Bhubaneswar-Jharsuguda-Raipur route had operated only six days during this period. “The flight services have been stopped for the past 15 days,” airport director, Suresh Kumar Chouhan told The Telegraph. “We are always told that the flight has been cancelled because of technical reason,” he said when asked about the reason of cancellation.

The director also confirmed that the airliner was yet to start online booking of tickets. He failed to confirm the reason why it is yet to link the service to the online system.
23/10/18  Subhas Panigrahi/Telegraph
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