Thursday, August 13, 2020

AAI awaits transfer of Sahnewal airport in its name to begin Halwara work

Ludhiana: It seems it will take more time before work on the much touted Halwara International Airport will begin. An Airport Authority of India (AAI) officer has said approval might be granted by the agency after the state government gets mutation of Sahnewal airport done in AAI’s name. Meanwhile, district administration officials aver that it is procedural thing and will be done.
An AAI officer, on condition of anonymity, said the AAI board approves such projects before the file is signed by the chairman. He added that as part of the memorandum signed between the AAI and the state government, the latter had to get mutation of land at Sahnewal airport in the name of AAI apart from Halwara airport, wherein a joint venture company will be formed.
“The project of development of Halwara International Airport will cost us around Rs 500 crore.Why will AAI invest such huge money if it is not gaining much. The state government must transfer Sahnewal airport, owned by it and from where we are operating, to AAI. Once that is done, we will get approval from higher authorities after which work will start. We too want early shifting of operations from Sahnewal to Halwara, which has better facilities,” said AAI officer.

Executive engineer public works department , building and roads wing, (PWD) Rakesh Garg said they are yet to get approval for the project work from AAI. District administration said the necessary steps will be taken.

“It is not in my notice and will ask aviation authorities about it (mutation of land) tomorrow. However, we have got directions to get mutation (of Sahnewal Airport land) done in their name. It is just a procedural thing,” said Ludhiana deputy commissioner (DC) Varinder Sharma.

The AAI officer also revealed that they have plan ready for the Halwara project. He added that they have decided that the construction of boundary wall of the airport will be done by PWD.
13/08/20 Shariq Majeed/Times of India

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