Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Birds create nuisance at Srinagar International Airport terminal

For the passengers travelling from the departure lounge of the Srinagar International Airport, finding a vacant seat is a taxing task. Paucity of seats now-a-days is not due to the social distancing norms but because they are occupied by unexpected guests, who swarm the terminal in large numbers.

Dozens of swallows, sparrows and pigeons not only occupy seats meant for passengers but much to the inconvenience of travellers are leaving behind bird droppings.

“If you want to see one of its kinds of an ornamental zoo, it is this airport terminal. Many airports around the world face the problems of birds entering the terminal but those airports have found a way out. Here you look around and all you can see is birds and bird poop,” said Mehmood Akhtar, a frequent traveller.

Passengers say the broken ceilings at the airport are allowing the birds to come inside the terminal. They say birds can be seen everywhere including the alleys, escalators and even inside the washrooms.

“I wanted to eat a snack while waiting for my flight departure. Firstly, there is hardly a place to sit and secondly the birds have created so much of a mess that I couldn’t eat a single bite. This place stinks badly,” said Asiya, another traveller.

The problem of birds inside the terminal building of the aerodrome has existed for the last several years. Airports Authority of India (AAI) which handles the terminal building operations had last year roped-in the Wildlife department to address the bird problem. The officials of this department visited the Airport and put forth suggestions after they found that birds had formed nests in and around the terminal building. The Wildlife Department officials had also warned that eagles on the runway were posing a threat of bird hits to the aircrafts. The issue of birds inside the terminal building was even raised in the Airports Advisory Committee meeting held last year but to no avail.

10/03/21 Saqib Malik/Greater Kashmir

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