Saturday, November 14, 2020

Call to restore Haj embarkation point at Calicut airport

Kozhikode: The Airport Advisory Committee of the Calicut International Airport has urged the Centre to restore the Haj embarkation point at the airport.

Committee chairman P.K. Kunhalikutty said several pilgrims travelling for Hajj from north Kerala were using the airport as their embarkation point. The Haj House near the airport has one of the largest facilities to manage movement of Haj pilgrims from the State.

Unfortunately, the Haj Committee of India did not list Calicut as an embarkation point this year. Removing the Calicut airport from the list of embarkation points will affect pilgrims from north Kerala, especially the aged ones, Mr. Kunhalikutty said in a memorandum to the Prime Minister.

Sources said the Haj embarkation point would be shifted to the Kannur International Airport along with the Cochin International Airport. It was in July this year that the operation of Haj flights was resumed by Saudia (Saudi Arabian airlines). It was after a gap of almost five years.

Now, after the Air India Express flight crash at the airport on August 7, the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) abruptly suspended the operation of wide-bodied aircraft from Calicut. It will be in force till a five-member team of the Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau (AAIB), probing the crash, submits its report.

14/11/20 The Hindu

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