Friday, October 15, 2021

Ahmedabad: Seaplane may not fly on 1st anniversary

Ahmedabad: On its maiden anniversary on October 31, India’s first seaplane service which has been suspended for over six months, is unlikely to resume operations.

Top state government officials said they have not yet heard from the airline SpiceJet, whose 100% subsidiary, SpiceShuttle, operates the seaplane service connecting Sabarmati Riverfront in Ahmedabad and the Statue of Unity in Kevadia.

“The service was expected to resume in September this year. However, we have not yet heard from the airline regarding resumption of service as yet,” said a state government source privy to the development.

“SpiceJet is in talks with a manufacturer to buy an aircraft. These processes take time and therefore, we are not sure whether and when the new aircraft will be procured and operationalised for the service,” said a source.

An email query sent to SpiceJet went unanswered. The service has remained suspended for 244 days since its inauguration on October 31, 2020.

The seaplane aircraft was brought for operations to India on lease by SpiceJet.

Sources confirmed that the aircraft is currently in Maldives and is yet to be brought back. Seaplane flights connecting Ahmedabad and Kevadia were suspended earlier this year just ahead of the second wave of Covid-19 infections.

15/10/21 Niyati Parikh/Times of India

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