Airport Authority of India (AAI) has turned down the request of the Indian Navy to reduce frequency of flights at the Goa International Airport during the summer schedule which comes into force from April. “There was a request from the Indian Navy to cut down the number of flights during the summer schedule. But we have not agreed,” Goa Airport Airport Director BCH Negi said on Saturday.
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The Goa airport, located in Dabolim, is managed by Indian Navy, which is part of its INS Hansa base near Vasco. Indian Navy has been conducting routine sortie of its flights from this facility.
According to sources, Navy wants to increase its timing of sortie during the summer schedule, following which it has written to the AAI.
“At our level, we have requested to maintain the flight schedule as it is. Indian Navy had given a written request to curtail the number of flights but it is not agreed,” he said. “I don’t know what is being decided at (the) higher level. Even Airlines have refused to cut down the number of flights,” he added.
Another senior AAI official said that the Navy had requested to reduce the number of flights allowed between 12.30 pm to 2.30 pm by about 15 flights due to operational reasons. Earlier this month, AAI Chairman Guruprasad Mohapatra had informed that currently 80 flights operate from the Goa airport on a daily basis, including the international ones.
It handles close to six million passengers annually, making it one of the busiest facility in the country.