Govt moots proposal for new regional airline service

In ITS bid to meet the ever-increasing passenger traffic needs in Gujarat,the government is not only going to involve private developers in the civil aviation sector...

Written by BASHIR PATHAN | Gandhinagar | Published:January 18, 2009 3:07 am

In ITS bid to meet the ever-increasing passenger traffic needs in Gujarat,the government is not only going to involve private developers in the civil aviation sector,but also proposes to launch a new dedicated regional airline service.

The government has mooted a proposal to enhance connectivity through a regional airline service between the existing airports and airstrips across Gujarat. The proposal has already been sent to the Union Civil Aviation Ministry for its approval.

Sources in the state Civil Aviation Department told Newsline on Saturday that for this,the government has floated Gujarat Tourism Project Development Company Limited (GTPDCL). It is a joint venture between IL&FS Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited and Tourism Corporation of Gujarat Limited (TCGL).

The company has already got a feasibility report done on this project.

Meanwhile,the state looks forward to further improve the air connectivity and also get a much-needed boost in the aviation infrastructure,with as many as 13 private firms having pledged an investment of over Rs 12,000 crore at the recently-concluded Vibrant Gujarat Global Investors’ Summit.

Among the private developers who inked MoUs at the VGGIS is the Sterling International Airport Pvt Ltd,affiliated to the Vadodara-based Sandesara Group that has proposed to set up an international airport and MRO (maintenance,repairs and operational) facilities in the Vadodara region. The proposed project involves a total investment of Rs 3,150 crore.

“The project will not only help ease the increasing passenger traffic at the Vadodara airport,but also provide better air connectivity to the people in the region. Under the new Central aviation policy,we want sufficient number of airports to be set up in Gujarat in the private sector,” a senior official said.

Deccan Aviation is another major private player that has signed an MoU to develop an international air cargo hub in a phased manner with an investment of over Rs 3,500 crore.

Also,the US-based Sky Line Aviation Club has proposed to set up a small aircraft manufacturing unit at the defunct Parsoli air field near Surat,involving an investment of Rs 1,100 crore. Details are being sought from the Collector to know if the land is still with the government.

The government has also received a proposal from the Kolkata-based Ruia Group to develop an air field at the pilgrim centre of Ambaji in north Gujarat with an investment of Rs 150 crore,and another from Seri Infrastructure Finance Ltd to develop the Dwarka airport in Saurashtra.

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