Chandigarh Rose Festival: Company offering chopper rides does not have requisite flying permissions

Deputy Commissioner says will give permission only when other authorities give the go-ahead.

Written by Hina Rohtaki | Chandigarh | Published:February 14, 2017 3:56 am

THE COMPANY that was given the tender by the Municipal Corporation for helicopter rides to visitors at the Rose Festival has sold over 150 tickets, but still does not have the requisite flying permissions from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and the Deputy Commissioner.

DGCA is the key authority for giving the final go-ahead. First, the District Magistrate who is also the Deputy Commissioner must give the permission in writing. Later, the company will forward the DC’s permission along with necessary details as required to the DGCA.

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However, UT Deputy Commissioner Ajit Balaji Joshi said that he would give the permission only when other authorities give the go-ahead. “Only today I received the file. Once the permission from respective departments like the Air Traffic Control and police is there, only then would the permission be given,” he said.

The DC has to give the permission as the helicopters will land at and take off from Sector 17 parade ground, an ‘uncontrolled airfield’, that is a landing area outside the designated airport. The Air Force, too, has to be informed.

“We have applied for the requisite permissions with the competent authorities. In fact, the DGCA gives the permission one or two days before only. I have been told that the letter from the Deputy Commissioner is pending and everything else is in place,” said Colonel Anil Raj, CEO of the Green Hawk Air Private Limited.

The CEO of the company said that he had informed the Air Force and other other officials of Air Traffic Control about flying. Necessary clearances have to be given by the DGCA.

Excited over the first-of-its-kind chopper rides at the Rose Festival from February 17 to February 19, many purchased tickets on Monday as well.

The seven-minute ride in Eurocopter AS350 B3 will cost Rs 3,500. The company is not charging children below two years of age. Flying will be from 9 am to 5.30 pm. It is proposed that the chopper will take off from Sector 17 parade ground, fly to Sukhna Lake, then to Rose Garden before turning back to Sector 17.

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