Wednesday, August 21, 2019

March 2022 deadline set for Arunachal’s Hollongi airport

Guwahati: The Union Civil Aviation Minister has set March 2022 as the deadline for completion of a greenfield airport that triggered the fall of the Congress and upsurge of the BJP in Arunachal Pradesh.

Hollongi airport near Itanagar was among a slew of projects for which Prime Minister Narendra Modi had laid the foundation stone in February. The airport is estimated to cost ₹1,200 crore.

Union Minister of State (Independent) for Civil Aviation Hardeep Singh Puri, during a videoconference with Arunachal Chief Secretary Naresh Kumar, said that the Centre would assist the State to ensure that the Hollongi airport is completed by March 31, 2022.
The focus of the discussion was also on developing helipads at five strategic locations in Arunachal Pradesh, apart from Tawang. The State government suggested air connectivity between India and Bhutan via the Tawang helipad.

The Hollongi airport project has been a touchy topic for successive governments in Arunachal Pradesh. It was one of the major reasons why the former Congress government headed by Nabam Tuki fell and the BJP came to power in the State.

The airport was initially scheduled to be built at Karsingsa, also near Itanagar, where former Union Minister Shivraj Patil had laid the foundation stone in 2008. The Tuki government rejected the site in 2012 due to “geographical complications” and opted for Hollongi.
21/08/19 The Hindu
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